2018 Victorian Public Healthcare Awards Finalists
Congratulations to Jeff Chen and the MRI department at Monash Children’s Hospital for being a finalist in the 2018 Victorian Public Healthcare Awards under the category Minister for Health’s Award for improving children’s health for their project ‘Escaping to fantasy land: using leading-edge technology to distract children during medical procedures.’
Jeff Chen and the MRI department trialled leading edge virtual reality (VR) technology to improve a child’s MRI experience. Working with Child Life Therapy and Ambient Experience the aim was to minimise anxiety and stress by providing a positive distraction for children and their parents.
Twenty-four children (18 male, 6 female) aged 4 to 13 years participated in the trial during medical procedures that included IV cannulation, blood test, ultrasound and general anaesthetic induction.
The two-month trial showed a 100 per cent success rate for IV cannulation and a much more enjoyable experience for the children. Every child said they would happily use VR again in the future. The results also demonstrated that VR significantly reduced the level of pain children reported during the insertion of an IV needle. This meant the child was more likely to have a successful MRI scan and a more positive experience, as well as enabling their medical treatment to progress.