Wednesday, May 15, 2013

iPads connect new moms with babies in intensive care

Apps such as Apple’s FaceTime have helped offer a more visual connection between contacts in different locations, and we’ve already seen similar technology applied in innovations such as A Story Before Bed, helping grandparents and distant parents to read bedtime tales to children from remote locations. Now the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles has launched a new scheme dubbed BabyTime, with the aim to enable hospitalized moms to check on and interact with their newborns in intensive care.
If the parent has had a Caesarian section or difficulties during childbirth that mean they aren’t able to walk around, having a new baby located elsewhere in the hospital can be a hard time, especially if they’re being kept in intensive care. The center has introduced an iPad-based program whereby a device is immediately delivered to moms whose newborn has been admitted to intensive care. An iPad is set up next to the baby and – through a secure internet connection – parents can see their child and interact with doctors present, asking questions and getting updates. Rachel Little, who was one of the first patients to test the service, said: “Even though I couldn’t hold her, she stopped crying when she heard me talk to her.”
The scheme could help reduce the stress and fear felt by both parents and babies when they’re separated at birth, providing a more comfortable environment for new mothers. How else can video streaming be used to better bring together far-flung parties?
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