08/22/2012 12:17 EDT | Updated 10/22/2012 05:12 EDT

Infants to receive rotavirus vaccine in Saskatchewan

REGINA - Saskatchewan is making a vaccine against a common gastro-intestinal childhood illness available starting in November.

The province is adding a two-dose oral vaccine against rotavirus to its infant immunization program.

The vaccine is meant for babies between six weeks and eight months of age.

Rotavirus, sometimes called gastroenteritis, causes inflammation of the stomach and intestines and causes vomiting, diarrhea and fever.

A loss of body fluids often results in dehydration that may require hospitalization.

Rotavirus is spread easily between children through contaminated hands and objects such as toys.

In Saskatchewan, it is estimated that rotavirus results in 9,000 episodes of illness in infants a year.