CHLA Innovation Studio’s Digital Health Lab welcomes our inaugural class!

The mission of the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) Innovation Studio is to implement new ideas at CHLA that add value. Our purpose is to build a thriving culture of innovation, solving complex problems by convening internal and external communities to transform care delivery models in pediatrics. We recognize that we cannot do this alone, and we strive to build an ecosystem to support innovation in pediatrics.

The CHLA Innovation Studio’s Digital Health Lab aims to accelerate the development and implementation of digital health tools and technologies in pediatric health care delivery to (1) enhance digital therapeutic care for patients; (2) improve clinical education and training for doctors, nurses and patient families; and (3) transform the patient and family experience so that the clinical setting is more appealing and less frightening for young patients. The 2019 focus is on augmented reality, virtual reality, gamification and immersive digital experiences. The Digital Health Lab is pleased to announce our inaugural class of teams working to improve pediatric care delivery and looks forward to supporting their work as they build and refine their prototypes over the next few months.

The Digital Health Lab includes:

  • CHLA Companion: CHLA Companion is an augmented reality and chat-bot enabled mobile application that will improve the patient and parent / caregiver experience before, during and after surgical procedures through providing a character companion to help children and caregivers better prepare for surgeries and improve outcomes after surgeries. CHLA Companion is being developed by yU+co with support from CHLA physicians, nurses, clinical experts and external payer and technology experts.
  • CODE:BLUE: CODE:BLUE is a virtual reality simulation tool, designed in partnership with emergency department providers, to enhance communication skills for multi-disciplinary clinical teams in urgent and stressful situations. The tool will enable varying degrees of stress and stimulation to improve provider training and communication. CODE:BLUE is being developed by local college students with support from CHLA physicians and nurses and external technology experts.
  • Cardiac Intensivists: In collaboration with Children’s National and SimX, this project is developing 25 virtual reality training simulation scenarios for pediatric cardiac critical care and cardiology providers. The scenarios are being developed by physicians from Children’s National and Children’s Hospital Los Angeles to improve training in these high intensity situations.
  • Dia Health: Dia Health is building a virtual triage platform to help parents understand what is “normal” for their child and what to do when they have health concerns. Dia will provide a parenting tool that can support a new parent with newborn-specific diagnostic questions, such as analyzing newborn poop with object recognition technology to determine whether or not a newborn’s poop is healthy. Dia Health is being developed with a number of CHLA physicians and clinical experts.
  • Gamifying Food Diaries: The food diary project will gamify the food logging experience for children to create an engaging experience that makes it fun for children to complete food logs so that they can more accurately track the foods they eat and share this data with their care providers.
  • Global Smiles: Global Smiles aims to improve global surgery through creating a partnership between GIBLIB, Operation Smile, and CHLA to leverage high quality video production and distribution to improve medical education and surgical training for medical teams across the world, first focusing on cleft palate surgery and then expanding to other procedures.
  • Home Mechanical Ventilation Emergency Training: CHLA’s pediatric pulmonology experts have created a center of excellence for treating children on home mechanical ventilation (HMV) and are working closely with external developers to create an immersive digital reality training curriculum for caregivers and home health nurses focused on emergency response training for children on home mechanical ventilation to prevent avoidable and premature deaths. Through improving education and training, caregivers will be better prepared to handle emergencies for this complex pediatric patient population.
  • Manatee: Manatee is developing a voice-enabled and artificial intelligence powered therapy robot that aims to provide cost-effective care at home for children with autism. Manatee is developing this robot with the clinical expertise of a number of CHLA physicians.
  • Mila: Mila is a music-based game for kids that combines neurologic music therapy techniques and cognitive gaming science to create a game that can remotely identify and train cognitive skills using computer vision and audio feedback for activities like singing and dancing. The Mila team recently completed the Cedars Sinai Techstars Accelerator program and will be working with internal and external experts to continue to build their prototype.
  • Miney Moe: Miney Moe has built an engaging game designed for pain management and communication during procedures that automatically adjusts cognitive load for optimal effect. It is an augmented reality based game that can be projected onto a Mira headset to allow for face mask induction and surgical procedures without sedation. The Miney Moe team will be working closely with CHLA’s Pain Management Clinic to study the effectiveness of the game.
  • PD Buddies: PD Buddies gamifies diabetes education through a virtual reality education session for kids with diabetes to better understand so their condition and to teach them healthy eating habits that will improve their diabetes management. The PD Buddies tree house experience allows children to learn about their condition through playing games. The team will be working closely with CHLA diabetes care team experts to refine their prototype.
  • Playing Forward: The Playing Forward team is developing an immersive virtual reality game-based entertainment intervention to improve motor skills in children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) using characters that they have developed and that have been licensed from well-known entertainment companies. In addition to children with ASD, Playing Forward will be developing use cases with CHLA’s occupational and physical therapy experts.
  • Positive Place: Positive Place creates a magical virtual garden experience for patients to explore with personalized flowers and notes written by friends and family. Using a virtual reality headset, patients explore virtual gardens, watching flowers bloom with messages of love and support from family and friends. Positive Place will provide a relaxing and immersive virtual reality experience for patients spending extended time in the hospital.
  • Ranger Loo!: Ranger Loo!, formerly known as Poo-Pee Interactive is in-home biofeedback game that educates and helps children learn how to control their pelvic floor and bladder to develop healthy behaviors when learning to go to the bathroom. The Ranger Loo! team is working closely with CHLA providers in Gastroenterology and Urology to develop their augmented reality game and sensor-enabled prototype.
  • Scavenger Hunt: Navigating the CHLA hospital can be challenging for patients and families, so CHLA is working with MarbleAR to create an augmented reality scavenger hunt to gamify the wayfinding experience for outpatient visits. The goal is to make it easier for patients and families to find their way to their appointments and more fun for children in the process. MarbleAR recently completed the Cedars Sinai Techstars Accelerator program.
  • Speak-iT: Speak-iT is a voice-activated speech therapy game that aims to improve the effectiveness of speech therapy by improving patient engagement and making speech therapy fun. It was designed with CHLA speech therapists and built by a 14 year old during the hackathon! The game will be developed closely with speech therapy experts at CHLA.
  • Virtual Real Heart: Virtual Real Heart is a virtual reality application that uses MRI data to create a virtual view of a patient’s heart that surgeons can use to better explore their patient’s heart to more deeply understand and visualize their condition, teach other providers, and plan for surgeries. The application is being developed with experts from CHLA’s Heart Institute.
  • Virtual Tour: CHLA’s Innovation Studio will be working closely with a development team to create a 360-degree virtual tour of the hospital and main campus so that patients, families and visitors can be better prepared for their visits to the hospital.

The Digital Health Lab is very excited to support the work of these great teams! If you are interested in getting involved with any of these teams, mentoring teams, donating time and resources, or learning more, please contact us.