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      What is rotavirus?

      Rotavirus can be a serious illness that parents should be aware of and has a greater effect on younger children.

      Rotavirus is a virus that causes diarrhea that can also be accompanied by vomiting, fever, and abdominal pains. It is most common for children under five years old, though adults can get the virus as well.

      A vaccine has been available since 2006 that has reduced the number of babies and children needing emergency care by 85 percent. Public health medical director, Dr. Terry Frankovich, says children are most affected by it because their immune systems are not built up enough to handle it yet.

      â??Most commonly it's spread hand to mouth,â?? explained Dr. Frankovich. â??So, very commonly you may see cases arise within a daycare setting where there are toddlers around each other. You can often swab surfaces and find, when there's an outbreak, rotavirus on table tops and things like that.â??

      Dr. Frankovich also says you can easily prevent the spread of the virus by washing your hands and covering your mouth.