Interactive theater at UIHC helps patients heal through games

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IOWA CITY, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) Patients and their families are enjoying an interactive theater during the healing process at the University of Iowa's Stead Family Children's Hospital.

For many parents, this theater acts as a distraction for their kids so they don't have to think about being at a hospital.

Nora Scott is only two-years-old and last month her parents received news no parent ever wants to hear.

Doctors diagnosed their little girl with Leukemia.

Nora has only been at the hospital for a few weeks, but her parents say she looks forward to visiting the interactive theater after her chemotherapy treatments.

"She's smiling the whole time she does it, it gives her a chance to just kind of take the reins for a little bit and decide what's fun to do and like I said it definitely gets her mind off of being plugged into a machine or sitting it in a hospital room, it gives her something fun to just kind of be in charge and be a kid a little bit," says Jeff Scott, Nora's father.

Dimensional Innovations out of the Kansas City area created the theater.

They have two interactive games, one is an eagles flight game that lets patients use their arms to control digital birds and fly through U.S. landmarks and the second tells a story using stars.

Researchers at the National Children's Medical Center in D.C. say video games can help children forget about pain as they begin to focus on something fun and interactive.

So far Nora's parents tell us they've been seeing some very positive results from her treatment.