Magical world distracts children in A&E

New 3D goggles and interactive technology help distract young patients being treated in the A&E...

New 3D goggles and interactive technology help distract young patients being treated in the A&E department of the Royal Alex

A visit to the A&E can be scary and potentially painful for a child, especially if they’ve broken a limb or need to have injections. But with this new technology, they are transported to a new world, all while they’re having their treatment.

This technology, funded by Rockinghorse, was requested by Darren Baldwin, Paediatric Nurse Practitioner in the A&E, following the previous 3D system coming to the end of its life.

Darren said, “I’ve worked here for over ten years and for at least half of that time we’ve been using a 3D distraction TV from Amazing Interactives LTD to help with more difficult procedures in our department, as well as for children’s with anxiety or other more complex learning difficulties/mental health problems.

“The TV was originally funded by Rockinghorse, has been very popular with the children and unbelievably helpful for us as clinicians.”

This new system not only replaces the 3D television but also adds special goggles, technology which is already being used by dentists and phlebotomists around the UK, and which are much more mobile and have already proven to be hugely popular with young patients.

On average the team see 20 patients a day, meaning that if they use this new technology on only half of these patients that would mean more than 3,500 children and young people will benefit from using it each year.

And not only is this a wonderful distraction but it also means that children can avoid having general anaesthetics for some procedures such as manipulation of fractures and, suturing wounds, and local anaesthetics. The team can carry also out blood tests or injections without children even noticing it has been done because they’re so well distracted.

In turn this also reduces stress, anxiety, fear and pain for patients as well as their parents and carers.

Since the goggles have arrived at the Alex they have already been put to good use. Lots of children have tried them out during their treatment and the staff have found them incredibly helpful.

Darren added, “The 3D goggles provide pleasant and immersive, sensory stimuli for the patient which in turn distracts them away from an unpleasant experience such as a blood test or wound closure. 

“Some procedures can seem scary and painful to children but the goggles have been a game changer and for the many kids who’ve tried them, they barely know the procedure has been carried out.
“Ultimately, the experience leaves the patient with positive memories instead of hospital being a scary place to come to.”

To find out more about this and the other projects we’re currently funding, click here.