A patient technologist looks for various forms of technology that can implemented at Golisano Children's Hospital to help enhance the overall experience for our patients and their families.
We use technology that's educational, therapeutic, and recreational and also helps our patients cope with their pain, stress, and anxiety.
It's just another way our child life department helps normalize the hospital environment -- all while having fun.
Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida was selected for a grant by Child’s Play Charity, which helped establish this role at Lee Health.
Our technologist works closely others around the country to help grow and establish this program, and that allows us to showcase the immense benefits for our specific patient population. Technologists meet once a week via conference chat and share ideas, suggestions, and advice to one another.
A patient technologist provides non-pharmacological services that assist with the management of pain, discomfort, and many other situations, all through distraction.
Along with seeing patients and providing therapeutic relief via technology, our technologist works with the child life director and senior leadership team on special projects that involve technology enhancements here at Golisano.
Technology services that we offer include:
- Virtual reality
- Augmented reality
- Video games
A Personal Touch
Meet Bradley "Brad" Devlin, our patient technologist!
"If you had asked me a year ago what a Patient Technology Specialist was, I wouldn't have been able to provide a clear answer. My best guess would have been "someone who assists patients with technology." However, now that I am in this role, I realize it encompasses so much more. Working as part of the Child Life team, I have the opportunity to help children cope during their hospital experience and momentarily forget that they are in a medical facility. My goal is to offer them a "fun" alternative while simultaneously working towards their physical and mental well-being, ultimately leading to their discharge."
"Sometimes, it's as simple as spending time together. I become the friend they can goof around with, joke with, and play games with. This helps alleviate their fear, anxiety, and even depression, allowing their mentality and psyche to relax. When I see a child smile and hear their parent or guardian say that it's the first time they have smiled since arriving here, it makes the entire job worthwhile."
"Many of these kids haven't had the chance to play certain games, use virtual reality (VR) headsets, or fly drones. I provide them with those experiences, allowing them to be kids even in the hospital environment. These games serve as an "escape" for children, and through VR, I can transport them to places like New York City, San Francisco, the Grand Canyon, or even the Space Station. They can break things in games like Beat Saber or fly around like Iron Man."
"With my background in the clinical field as a medical assistant for 12 years, a lifeguard for 10 years, and having studied to become an EMT, transitioning to a non-clinical role has given me a unique perspective. I understand to some extent what each patient is going through and what approaches may or may not work. I can discuss these insights with the clinical staff and integrate them into the patients' care plans."
"Currently, we have a selection of gaming consoles such as PlayStation 4 & 5, PlayStation 4 VR, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, a gaming laptop, Oculus Quest, and a drone available in the hospital. I hope to expand our offerings and extend my services to other hospitals, so that everyone, including adult patients, can enjoy them. Whether patients want to engage in one-on-one gaming sessions, have a brief conversation and request a game, or watch a movie to alleviate their sense of loneliness, I strive to provide options to cater to their individual needs."
Patient Success Stories
Brad l says: “I haven't been in this position for very long, but I have had an impactful patient success story. There was a recent patient that had appendix issues and ended up needing surgery, then lots of antibiotics. The patient needed to walk, but was not willing to walk very far or for very long. I used Mario Kart Live and formed a "Championship" race around the unit. Mario Kart Live, is Mario cart with little R/C karts connected to the game. I gave the patient one of the karts over the weekend to practice with. When I returned on Monday, the patients mother told me that they had been practicing all weekend and made multiple circles around the unit."
"Once the race began, we did five laps around the unit, each lap the patient became more and more confident in ambulating. The patient began laughing, and joking while getting very competitive. Their mother then said, "finally, their personality is back" The patient was discharged three days later and asked to come visit all the time."
Reach out to our patient technologist at 239-343-5894 or email [email protected].