CHCH News Now
Friday February 24, 2012
Taz Boga, CHCH News
McMaster’s Children’s Hospital has launched CLICK, Child Life Interactive Computers for Kids program. Laureen Harper, the Prime Minister's wife, seen below was on hand for the launch. She says it makes an already great Canadian children's hospital an even better place for sick kids to get well.
The potential of this program is as unlimited as the internet itself. All human beings are happier and healthier when they are interacting with other people and busy doing the things they want to do. In other words, click has therapeutic value. More than we can understand at this early stage of development. In fact, it is a good bet that in a few years that experience will show that click has a positive, measurable impact on the healing process.
McMaster Children’s Hospital is the fifth across Canada to implement CLICK, thanks to Microsoft Canada and Children’s Miracle Network. The interactive computer technology allows Mac kids to stay connected with friends, family, and school.
|Lennox Huang, Chair and Chief of Pediatrics with Laureen Harper,
wife of Prime Minister Stephen Harper,
at the CLICK Launch at McMaster Children's Hospital
'CLICK' the kid connection; Hospital launches computer program to ease patient stress
Saturday February 25, 2012
Byline: Kate Wilkinson Special to The Hamilton Spectator
When Connor McGee finishes his chemotherapy treatment for brain cancer in two months, he's looking forward to challenging his mom to a virtual dance-off.
The challenge from his mother came as they discussed a new interactive dance game for the Xbox Kinect console, which McGee was excited to learn would be coming to his ward at McMaster Children's Hospital.
"You talk to my friends, they'll tell you how good of a dancer I am," he says.
The Xbox arrived Friday as the hospital launched the Child Life Interactive Computers for Kids program, or CLICK.
Tablet PCs, webcams, digital cameras and other technology will be used throughout the hospital to help in-patients keep up with school work, stay in touch with family and friends, and provide a distraction from their illness.
Laureen Harper, wife of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, was on site for the program launch.
"CLICK has therapeutic value," she said in a speech. "In fact, it's a good bet that in a few years, experience will show that CLICK has a positive, measurable impact on the healing process."
Established in 2005, the program has been implemented at five children's hospitals across Canada in partnership with Microsoft and the Children's Miracle Network.
CLICK co-ordinator Jenny Beaudoin says it will help reduce in-patients' anxiety and stress, and "make the hospital stay seem less long."
Apps provided on tablets and movable PC workstations on wheels, called WOWs, will be used for simple tasks such as social networking, but also to help explain surgeries and other medical procedures to patients.
Travis Morgan, 17, who endured a six-month hospital stay in 2010 after his surgery for Crohn's disease, took part in selecting the technology for CLICK.
"Most of the time, in the beginning, it was just sitting around," he says of the initial part of his hospital stay.
As time went on, he was able to start meeting other kids in his ward through his love of video games.
"I always made friends with who I was sharing with," he says.
His mother, Linda Morgan, says the new technology will be helpful to children staying at the hospital for extended periods.
"They can get together, instead of just having to play by themselves all the time. It's tough being in here day in and day out," she says.
McGee says he's looking forward to using the technology to communicate more often with his friends and family.
"I think the thing that gets you through cancer the easiest is that you have people around you."
There's a three-year implementation plan to have the CLICK technology in use throughout McMaster Children's Hospital.
wife of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Lennox Huang, and others were
present for the CLICK Launch at McMaster Children's Hospital.