Children recovering from various operations and treatments at Miami Children’s Hospital now can spend their time playing games, watching movies or listening to lullabies on new iPads, thanks to an anonymous donor.
Dr. Chad Perlyn, plastic surgeon at MCH and co-chair of the Miami Children’s Young Ambassadors, a group of young leaders that enact change for the betterment of children, was speaking during a Miami Children’s Hospital Foundation fundraising meeting on how powerful the effects of technology can be for children in recovery. Within a matter of weeks of the July meeting, 10 new iPads arrived at MCH.
“When children are recovering from surgery, they are often confused and disoriented, so medications are often administered to promote relaxation. This can make the recovery process longer,” Dr. Perlyn said.
“Caregivers in the post-surgical units are experts in the art of pain relief and creative distraction of patients. The iPads have proven to be an irresistible tool and great patient satisfier,” he added.
The devices are not only popular among patients in recovery, physicians and nurses at MCH also believe that these electronic devices enable patients to take their minds off of their illnesses enough to minimize the use of pain medication. Parents and families usually find their loved ones smiling with the iPads in the recovery room.
“The use of electronics has taught nurses that there is more than one way to help a patient,” said Ana Bonet, clinical educator at MCH. “Technology helps us think outside the box in terms of pain management and allows us to visit other strategies in pain reduction.”
Whether the patient is a young toddler or even a teenager, the iPads offer age-appropriate entertainment for all types of patients. As soon as the iPads were put to use, the difference was as night and day. Dr. Perlyn said.
“There is no question that our recovery room is now a much warmer and more comforting environment for the patients. It was a nice way for the Young Ambassadors to give back to the hospital.”