A SPANISH hospital has launched a stress-reducing initiative which allows children ‘drive’ themselves to the operating room in an electric car.
While a member of staff controls the vehicle by remote, the scheme helps ‘eliminate the stress and tears’ of young patients prior to surgical treatment.
A spokesperson for IMQ Zorrotzaurre Hospital in Bilbao, said the car system ‘is demonstrating great efficiency, getting children who require surgery to go more quietly to the operating room’.
General director, Nicolas Guerra, said there was ‘considerable concern about the tears and the state of nervousness and anguish of the little ones’.
He added that, it was extremely difficult to calm some children once they realised they were being separated from their parents.
The team of IMQ anaesthetists were reportedly most concerned about the levels of anguish because ‘if children fall asleep scared, they will wake up in the same way’.
While if a child falls asleep calmly, ‘they tend to wake up from the intervention with less upset and worry’.
After mulling over a number of ideas and researching what was done in other hospitals, the hospital board decided to purchase an electric car.
A survey of nurses, surgeons and anaesthetists who spoke with young patients revealed 98 per cent of children wanted to use the stroller, all of whom entered the operating room ‘calm and without tears’.
Of those, 95 per cent woke up ‘calm and without agitation’.