Rotavirus (RV) infection is the main cause of severe acute gastroenteritis (GE) in the pediatric population and has a major impact in both developing and industrialized countries. The reduction of severe RVGE cases, followed by death or hospitalization, is considered the main benefit of RV vaccination, even though its implementation often faces obstacles. In Italy, the recently approved National Immunization Plan aims to overcome the differences among regions, offering a universal free RV vaccination. The aim of the study was to evaluate the opinions on benefit and acceptability of RV vaccination related to the perception of the burden of RV disease. Data were collected from 108 physicians in 2015 by a questionnaire consisting of 12 questions; some answers were compared with those obtained with a similar tool in 2011. The majority of respondents (76.2%) was convinced of the benefit of the vaccine and 57.4% recommended it routinely, but more than half indicated a <25% adherence to RV vaccination among their patients. As the main reasons of vaccine refusal, skepticism about the vaccine (60.4%) and its cost (34.1%) were indicated. Our data confirm that more information and counselling are needed to increase RV vaccine coverage.
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