The Toy as a Factor of Better Children’s Integration in Hospitalization Context
Nowadays, about 121.000 pediatric hospitalizations occur every year in Portuguese hospitals. Hospital admission is a process in which individuals are imposed to change their routines and daily habits and be integrated in a completely new environment. For children, this process is worse than for adults and it leads to undesirable feelings, such as fear and anxiety, which can result in a traumatic experience that negatively affects the recovering process. This paper presents the research work that has been conducted in the scope of the Master Program in Product and Industrial Design of University of Porto, seeking to understand how Design, along with the strategies already used to reduce the negative impact caused by hospitalizations in children’s life, can be used to create a toy that promotes moments of abstraction from the environment in which children are inserted in, as well as moments of play combined with learning and physical, cognitive and social development. Based on the analysis of data collected, a building toy was developed, “Boneco Cubo”, composed by different parts that can be attached to each other in different ways and that intends to contribute to a better integration in the hospital environment while simultaneously stimulating the children’s development. It also intends to be an ally to healthcare professionals as an instrument of children development evaluation.
KeywordsToys in hospitals Hospitalization Child Design
To the Hospital Centers participating in this research, especially the multidisciplinary teams, parents and children who got involved in this study.
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: Project NORTE-01-0145-FEDER-000022 SciTech Science and Technology for Competitive and Sustainable Industries, co financed by Programa Operacional Regional do Norte (NORTE2020), through Fundo Europeu de Desenvolvimento Regional (FEDER).
Declaration of Conflicting Interests
The author(s) declared no potential conflicts of interest with respect to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.
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