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Living Proof: Nicaragua – A Vaccine's Remarkable Impact
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Living Proof: Nicaragua – A Vaccine's Remarkable Impact
Diarrheal diseases are some of the deadliest afflictions for newborns and young children in developing countries. They are also some of the most preventable. The rotavirus vaccine has reached 80 percent of Nicaraguan children under five years old and is responsible for saving thousands of lives.
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Produced by Living Proof. For more information, go to ONE.org/livingproof.
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Segment 1

TITLE
Nicaragua
DR. OJEDA GUTIERREZ [Director, Pantasma Health Center]
Three years ago we had high rates of diarrhea and severe dehydration. We had so many cases that we would have two babies sharing one bed. I am a doctor, but I'm also a father. And it was hard to lose so many of our kids to rotavirus. We felt helpless because so many of our kids would come here only to die. And even though we would do everything we could to treat them, for every child we healed, two new ones would appear. For every one that left, three new ones came.
MAN
My daughter's name is Skarla Serai Alvarez. I have four kids, and she is the youngest. She is my princess. We are here because she's sick. She's vomiting and has diarrhea. As a dad, I work to protect my kids, but sometimes I worry.
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Diarrheal disease kills 2 million children every year. Rotavirus is the leading cause of those deaths.
DR. OJEDA GUTIERREZ
When this vaccine arrived in Pantasma, the number of cases of diarrhea dropped. Today, we don't have a single child admitted into our rotavirus ward.
TITLE
More than 80 percent of Nicaraguan children under five have been vaccinated against rotavirus, including Skarla.
MAN
We are going home today. If she hadn't been vaccinated, she'd be a lot worse.
DR. OJEDA GUTIERREZ
We may not be able to prevent kids from getting diarrhea, but we are able to prevent them from dying from it. And that is something we couldn't say before.
MAN
For my daughter, I want everything. I want her to grow strong and healthy. She's two years old, and I hope she grows to be a strong and determined woman. A superstar. Right, my love?
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Living Proof: Real Lives, Real Progress.
TITLE
Since the vaccine's introduction in 2006, Nicaragua has reduced very severe rotavirus cases by 77 percent. A rotavirus vaccine will be introduced to 44 of the world's poorest countries by 2015.
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Living Proof: Real Lives, Real Progress. www.one.org/livingproof