Home > In the News and Press Releases > Reaching New Depths with the Immersive Power of Virtual Reality, Children’s Charity Seeks to Ease the Stress and Pain of Critically Ill Pediatric Patients

Through A Relaxing Dive to a Coral Reef in Belize Using an Oculus Rift VR System, Sick Children at the Believe In Tomorrow Children’s House at Johns Hopkins Can Alter Their Reality, and Possibly Escape the Stress of Medical Treatment

BALTIMORE, Aug. 16, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — The Believe In Tomorrow Children’s Foundation is restarting a 12-year-old research project exploring the effects of virtual reality technology on pediatric pain and stress management. The project builds upon substantial prior virtual reality research conducted by Believe In Tomorrow and BreakAway Games that led to the creation of an under the sea diving experience named Free Dive in 2006. The Foundations new research project will utilize software developed and provided by Cascade Game Foundry, based in Redmond, Washington, and includes their Infinite Scuba, and Dive with Sylvia VR titles.

The research will initially be conducted at the Believe In Tomorrow Children’s House at Johns Hopkins, which is a hospital residential facility that provides accommodations to critically ill children receiving treatment at the Johns Hopkins Children’s Hospital. If successful, it will be incorporated into all Believe In Tomorrow Pediatric Hospital and Respite facilities as a tool for patients and family members to manage stress and pain. Using an Oculus Rift VR system, users will be able to take a relaxing dive on a coral reef and explore an under-the-sea environment. “The regulated breathing, the sound of the bubbles, and the captivation and beauty of the coral reef provide all of the elements needed to immerse a user into a calming experience that is starkly different from the medical world where many of these children spend their day,” said Brian Morrison, Founder and CEO of the Believe In Tomorrow Foundation.

Dive with Sylvia is based on a coral reef dive in Belize with legendary oceanographer and National Geographic Explorer in Residence Dr. Sylvia Earle.  The Believe In Tomorrow Children’s Foundation is a world leader in pediatric respite and hospital housing programs with a mission to reduce the stress faced by critically ill children and their families.