Lucy, age 9, sustained a nasty fracture to her 5th finger after a bounce on a trampoline didn’t go quite as planned and required a visit to NHW Emergency Department (ED).
Lucy’s mum, Helen, said Lucy was a little apprehensive about attending the ED but when she found out about the Smileyscope virtual reality (VR) headset, it relieved some of her anxiety.
The Smileyscope is a virtual reality (VR) headset that patients can use to help relieve stress, fear and anxiety during medical procedures and comes with various relaxing experiences.
“The VR headset was a fabulous distraction and she was quite amazed that she was diving with whales and seals whilst having her plaster applied. It really did alleviate her anxiety about being in hospital,” said Helen.
Lucy and her mum returned the next day to the Paediatric Ward for day surgery to insert Kirschner wires (K-wires) needed to repair the fracture.
Thankfully, our Paediatric Ward also has a Smileyscope, so Lucy had the opportunity to use it again and try out the rest of the programs.
“We had a long wait for theatre, but she loved trying out the headset on the ward, diving with seals and playing with kittens again.”
“It truly was a great experience for her and I also loved having the time to have a play with it myself!” said Helen
Lucy will need to attend a fracture clinic appointment in 3 weeks to remove her wires, and she’s already asking her mum if she can use the Smileyscope when she returns for her next procedure.
Thanks to the Koala Kids Foundation, NHW has Smileyscope VR Headsets to help patients/clients stay calm during treatment.