The hospital gave the kids miniature cars to drive to the operating room to relieve some of the pre-surgery jitters.
Going into surgery can be a pretty scary ordeal to handle. The toughest people can get stressed out about going into an operating room. If the idea of having surgery can make adults worry, then it's hard to imagine what it's like being a kid in that position. Staff at the Doctors Medical Center in Modesto, California, came up with a really fun way for their young patients to relax before surgery. The hospital gave the kids miniature cars to drive to the operating room to relieve some of the pre-surgery jitters.
The hospital scored themselves a snazzy pink Volkswagen Beetle and a sharp black Mercedes, encouraging the little patients to drive the miniature cars into surgery. The staff was excited to share that the toy cars really did work and made all the 'stress and anxiety' disappear once the kids got behind the wheel. Speaking to PEOPLE magazine, the hospital staff said: "These sweet rides take our smallest patients to the operating room. The goal is to reduce anxiety and stress, and make the experience less scary for everyone involved."
A hospital is helping ease their young patients' anxiety by letting them drive a minicar into the operating room: https://t.co/aTqahJY8v7— FOX 32 News (@fox32news) April 8, 2019
It was an innovative idea that pre-op nurse Kimberly Martinez suggested to the hospital after doing some research and finding out that the miniature cars had a 'lasting impact' on the children heading in for surgery. The approach has so far been a success, said the hospital in a statement. "When the children find out they can go into the operating room riding in a cool little car, they light up, and in most cases, their fears melt away," said the hospital. "In addition, when parents see their children put at ease, it puts them at ease as well."
The black Mercedes was picked up by the hospital and the pink Volkswagen was generously donated by an employee and her family. The miniature one-seater cars come equipped with a stereo which has an assorted collection of pre-loaded music. It also happens to have an MP3 player which the kids can operate using a remote control. The tricked-out cars also have working headlights, doors that open, and dashboard lights. The kids can even put the car in reverse and zip around before heading for surgery.
A video shared by the hospital shows a young patient zipping towards the operating room in the miniature pink Volkswagen Beetle. Her face shows no signs of stress as she rolls past the camera. The caption explains that the cars really have helped the young patients before they enter the operating room. People praised the hospital's efforts to address and manage the children's anxieties, and some even offered to donate more toy cars to the hospital after seeing the happiness the toy car brought the little girl.
Doctors Medical Center staff did see a change in their patients and have praised the impact of the toy cars. "It can be traumatizing for a young patient to be peeled away from their parents as they head into surgery. This truly helps everyone involved," the hospital added.