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New entertainment system brings welcome distraction to children’s ward

Children who are unable to leave their hospital bed during treatment can now play their favourite console games, thanks to the creation of a brand new bespoke mobile entertainment solution.

Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity has taken exclusive first delivery of seven state-of-the-art GameStation Move units, funded entirely by fundraising organisation, Carter the Brave, run by Lucy and Matthew Chatting.

The Chatting’s have personal experience of the challenges faced by children undergoing long term hospital treatment, as their seven year old son Carter was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia, a type of cancer which affects the white blood cells, and received extensive treatment at Birmingham Children’s Hospital.

GameStation Move is designed and manufactured  in the UK by SLKids, part of Sound Leisure, with design input from both the hospital and Carter the Brave, with the singular aim of providing bed-bound kids with a way to have fun and just be kids. Each unit houses an xbox One or PlayStation 4 console and is able to play DVDs, music and games without the need for a Wi-Fi connection. The units, which are the first of their kind, are completely mobile, allowing movement between patients and wards.

With a design reminiscent of an over-bed table hospital table, the LCD game screen can be raised and tilted forwards so it can be used by children who need to remain laid flat in bed, or lowered and tilted back to be played by patients sitting up in bed or in a chair.  Each unit has two controllers so the kids can play with friends, parents or hospital staff with ease.

Mike Black, director at SLKids, said:

Children in hospital can be isolated for potentially very long periods and with patchy Wi-Fi and only a few family members allowed to visit, one can only imagine how the days and hours can drag on for these poorly kids who have so much to deal with already. When the hospital explained the need, we really wanted to develop something that had the potential to bring some fun and familiarity back to their lives.

We worked closely with the hospital developing numerous prototypes to address key design aspects such as infection control and patient usability, and the result is a completely unique product that we can already see brings huge benefits to young patients.

Miranda Williams, Public Fundraising Manager at Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity, added:

The GameStation Move units will make such a difference to our young patients. One of the key aims of our charity is to improve the hospital environment and experience for our kids and families and these will definitely help to do that. We’re so thankful to the Chattings for their support and are pleased that we are the first children’s hospital in the UK to be able to offer these amazing SLKids products to our patients.

The Gamestation Move helps children like Oscar

Lucy and Matthew Chatting who run ‘Carter The Brave’ are currently throwing their support behind fundraising efforts for five year old, Oscar Saxelby-Lee. Oscar had a stem cell transplant and was unable to leave his hospital room at all for over nine months. Unfortunately, Oscar relapsed three months after his transplant and continues to attend hospital appointments, which he found hugely upsetting before the GameStation Move units were installed.

Lucy Chatting, from Carter The Brave said:

Oscar was in clinic on Friday and gets really distressed going back in to hospital, but spending time on the GameStation Move totally transformed his visit.

Oscar now needs urgent, lifesaving treatment for Car T Cell therapy in Singapore, costing £500,000. To donate, visit Oscar’s fund-raising page:   

Photo: Carter Chatting (7) and Carys Campbell (6) play on a GameStation Move, Sound Leisure