Alpha Project Suggestions

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This is a running list of suggestions for project ideas. We've broken our ideas into four main categories (in no particular order): Patient Distractions, Way Finding, Infection Control, Social Care.


Patient Distractions

These suggestions are any that would present distraction ideas that would help to remove the patient from their current situation.

Art In The Hospital

  • Instead of the random painted ceiling tiles currently at Hugh-Spalding, we could do a mural or motif through the whole ceiling, similar to Duncan Hall at Rice University (Links: Official Site, Unofficial History). According to the numbers on Rice’s website, this could be done for approximately $1.20 a square foot. An abstract design could be used and the children could be encouraged to develop stories about what they see in the motif.
  • Sketch-based controlled robotic toys in children’s playroom. Allows children to be creative while interacting with technology. A real blue sky idea.

Technology For The Patients

  • Provide bedside computers that have access to games, TV and the internet.
  • Provide Head Mounted Displays to distract the patients when they are in procedures.
  • Explore the possibilities for HMDs while in MRI machines. This could reduce the number of children that need to be sedated for such procedures.
  • Have headphone sets for the patients so that they can watch TV and not increase noise levels for others.
  • Allow them to access music databases provided by the hospital.

Way Finding

These suggestions are to help someone find their way around the hospital.

  • Texas Children’s Hospital has each floor in the building painted with a different color motif. Thus, children and stressed parents do not have to remember “Floor 5” but “Blue” and they can get to the proper floor. With Hughes-Spalding’s 3 floor design, the advantages of that would not be great. However, Hughes-Spalding’s design sections off different divisions of the hospital, which we could color. So, for example the Primary Care Clinic could be Yellow, while the ED could be Red and the central waiting area could be in gradient shades of Orange, blending to Yellow approach the PCC, and blending to Red as you approach the ED.
  • The ceiling mural from above can also be designed to serve as a way finding guide, especially if associated with a color-scheme separation of areas.
  • LCD/OLED/LED based signs which can easily be updated without having to replace them to provide up-to-date way finding information.
  • Arriving to the hospital
  - Shuttle from MARTA, maps at MARTA
  - Child footprints leading to the entrance of the hospital
  • Interactive entrance map
  - Mock of hospital
  - Touch screen that visitors/patients can use to find 
      - Units
      - Rooms
      - Physicians
  - Light up path
  - Choice to print map immediately
  - Show colored/themed sections/floors

Infection Control

These suggestions deal with ways to aid in infection control.

  • RFID-based alert system to remind doctors to wash their hands before dealing with patients. An LED on the doctor’s ID badge would turn red if they entered the “patient zone” without first entering the “sink zone” and turning on the sink. Acts as both a reminder to the doctor and as an external way for the patient/patient family to know whether the doctor’s washed his hands or not.

Social Care

These suggestions are how to build social interactions into the patient's care + build transparency of care into the hospital.

Patients + Paint

  • Patients have these digitally-interfaced headboard covers that can double as both a computer for the nurse and a creative playground for the patient. Patients can pull the cover out in front of them on their bed and digitally finger paint a picture or an image on the screen. There would be the ability to download and send this painting to other kids in the hospital, as well as downloading the prints to send to other family members, etc. We also discussed the idea of having an exchange of patient paintings--one patient works on the painting for a couple minutes and then it is automatically sent to another patient in the same hospital, who then works on completing the original painting, and it's then passed onto other patients. Then, after several times of this, you would be able to send the finished art to all the patients involved, allowing them to interact through digital art.

Transparency of Care

  • Use interactive screens to explain what will happen when you go into certain rooms (ex, MRI, blood transfusion room, etc) that would be fun, short blurbs that the kids could touch and it would guide them through what is about to happen with lots of pictures, diagrams, short phrases. These screens could be located just inside each room, so patients could interact with them while waiting on a doctor or nurse to attend to them.

Care Pages

  • Some sites to use as models--
    - http://www.carepages.com/
    - http://www.choc.org/carepages/index.cfm
    - http://www.getwellnetwork.com/pdfs/Carepages%201-sheet.pdf