Going to the hospital can be incredibly scary for kids. Having an MRI done in a tiny little tube, while it doesn’t hurt, can feel seriously daunting for children, especially newbies who haven’t had a lot of medical treatment before.
In order to make the process smoother, and a lot more fun, GE has turned several of its MRI machines into miniature theme parks and playsets for the under 12 set to help ease the pain of getting medical testing.
Naturally, three of the GE MRI and CT scan sets feature outer space, as it blends in seamlessly with the bulky scanning equipment. Each of the themes feature a cast of characters that the child can interact with while they’re being scanned. This helps keep them still and cooperative while the team looks at what’s going on inside their bodies.
The Adventure Series, as GE has dubbed it, was created by Erik Kemper and Doug Dietz.
Dietz said during a TED Talk that he got the idea from seeing a young girl terrified of having a scan.
“A young patient was coming into the MR room to be scanned. I see this young family coming down the hallway and I can tell as they get closer that the little girl is weeping. As they get even closer to me, I notice the father leans down and just goes ‘remember we talked about this, you can be brave,'” he explained.
Dietz says the beige machinery looked daunting, and like a bunch of bricks with a hole in the wall.
The machinery is in position at 27 children’s hospitals in the United States, and it is safe to say it’s been a hit.
The Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh even reported that they are having trouble prying kids off the machines after they have their scans, proving that the machinery really does calm the smallest of patients.