Hospitals using virtual reality to help sick kids

How headsets are helping children in Caboolture hospital

Virtual reality headsets are being used at Caboolture Hospital and The Prince Charles Hospital Children’s Emergency Department, Chermside, to make visits less traumatic for youngsters.

Playing customised programs, games and apps they help young patients “escape from the hospital environment” while being treated.

The headsets were bought by The Common Good using funds from the National Curing Homesickness initiative and its major partner, Coles.

Invaluable

Children’s emergency departments typically have colourful murals on walls or bed screens to help distract from medical procedures.

But virtual reality headsets offer a more immersive and interactive experience which has proven even more effective. As children are distracted, staff can perform their tasks fast and efficiently.

The Prince Charles Hospital’s Children's Emergency Department Clinical Director, Dr David Wood believes new equipment, like the headsets, is invaluable.

“Hospital is a traumatic place for people of all ages, but it is a very scary environment for children,” he said.

Big difference

“These headsets give children a chance to escape from the hospital environment while they are being treated.”

The headsets also help parents or family members who often find it distressing when their loved one has a needle or a medical procedure.

The Common Good’s Chief Executive Officer, Michael Hornby, said the Curing Homesickness initiative will make a difference to the lives of sick kids.

Vital funding

“The Curing Homesickness campaign, through its major partner Coles, has raised vital funding towards buying the latest equipment for The Prince Charles Hospital children’s service which cares for around 30,000 children every year”, he said.

“Equipment such as the Virtual Reality headsets, along with the fabulous care provided by our amazing health professional are helping kids in hospital get back home where they belong.

“We are so grateful for the ongoing support of Coles and the Curing Homesickness”.

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