A new iOS app called Pain Squad has been developed for children battling cancer, to help them deal with chemotherapy, hair loss and hospital stays. The app is the first to be developed to accompany children on their journeys, helping them to keep a daily log of their experience in a fun and interactive way.
The app was developed by ideas company Cundari after paediatric oncologists at the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) in Toronto were looking for a way to minimise pain, improve quality of life and reduce distress for cancer patients and their families.
Pain Squad is a police-style game with missions and rewards designed to engage kids enough to fill out their pain diaries twice each day for two weeks.
“Kids using the app will start to understand what’s working for them in managing their pain,” says Mike Orr, Cundari lead digital strategist. “It really empowers them and makes them feel like they have some control.”
The information entered into the app will be used in SickKids’ ongoing research on paediatric cancer.
Pain Squad is expected to roll out in different hospitals around Canada in the coming months.
Do you think apps like Pain Squad are the future for cancer research and treatment? Should more hospitals use apps to engage with patients? Let us know what you think.