The hospital can be a scary place for kids, especially if they have to stay for an extended period of time. The constant in-and-out of doctors and regular tests, combined the the monotony of sitting day after day in the same hospital room can be a traumatic experience for a young child. So to ease their tensions and make the experience more exciting, a Chicago startup is bringing “virtual adventures” to Lurie Children’s Hospital.
Georama, based out of 1871, offers vicarious experiences to tourism companies, hotels, colleges, and other organizations to create a more personalized virtual tour. The vicarious experiences are conducted in real-time with a guide that has a wearable camera. Viewers can interact with the guide and control what they see to provide a more interactive tour experience.
Georama’s partnership with Lurie Children’s Hospital will allow sick children the ability to go on virtual adventures that will be broadcast throughout the hospital.
“Our technology has the potential to make a big social impact by providing experiences for those who are physically or financially unable to be somewhere,” Nihal Advani, Founder and CEO of Georama said in a statement. “Lurie Children’s is known for being an innovative organization that already has a dedicated Children’s Services team that creates programming for patients and their families, and this enhances those opportunities.”
Lurie and Georama first started working together last month to create a live virtual tour of Christkindlmarket Chicago that walked children through the exhibit’s toy shops, food stalls, sweets stores and souvenir shops. At Lurie Children’s Hospital, Georama will provide a number of virtual adventures to patients and their families in 2015.
“Since many of our patients cannot leave their hospital rooms, we were able to broadcast the tour ‘live’ via our in-house TV station, Skylight TV, so everyone could participate,” added Susan Ruohonen, Director of Children’s Services. “We also see this as an educational tool for our patients and their families, and look forward to hosting several of these events throughout the year.”
Screengrab via Georama