Hospital Gives Kids Bedside Web Access

Touchscreen bedside units replace traditional hospital TVs and give pediatric patients Internet access, and a new way to communicate with hospital staff.
The GetWell system also interfaces to the hospital's Epic hospital information system. So, once a child is admitted or transferred to the hospital, she is set to use the GetWell unit when she arrives in her room. "The system 'knows' where the patient is," said Lorenz.

Parents who sign up for the hospital's MyNemours Web-based personal e-health record services can also access their child's records via the GetWell unit, as well as send e-mail to the patient's physicians. Access to the hospital's Web-based MyNemours e-health record systems is through GetWell, not through the hospital's clinical systems, for security, said Lorenz.

The child-friendly, on-demand medical educational video content is provided by, which is a division of Nemours, owner of the Alfred I. duPont pediatric hospital. for many years has provided Web-based educational health content to about 50 children's hospitals in the U.S. The video content service is new from

While Alfred I. duPont is the first children's hospital to debut GetWell Town in this region, an exclusive partnership between and GetWellNetwork will provide the video services to other children's hospitals throughout the country, said Dr. Neil Izenberg, founder and CEO of

The educational programming includes more than 150 short videos on health issues often faced by children, including asthma and diabetes, said Izenberg. Those videos are child-friendly, often featuring other kids telling about their health stories and experiences.

The educational videos also include instructional material for parents, such as how to change a child's tracheostomy or gastrostomy tubes, said Izenberg. Parents can also arrange to access the instructional material from home via the Web when the patient is released from the hospital, he said.

Parents of patients also have control to block the kids' Internet access, if they choose. Also, for younger patients who haven't yet learned to read, icons -- such as a satellite dish -- appear on the touchscreen for accessing the GetWell functions.

The GetWell services give kids web access without having to bring along their own computing devices, which would put those gadgets in risk of getting lost or broken during a hospital stay.

"This is about empowering the patient and family," Lorenz said. "This keeps communication going," while improving patient and family satisfaction, he said.