Making diabetes bearable for kids

Jerry the bear

For a child, having diabetes can be scary, and learning to treat the disease can be confusing.

Two young entrepreneurs have made diabetes care less daunting and more fun: By turning a child’s best friend – the teddy bear – into a cuddly, high-tech teaching tool.

Covered in soft, asthma-friendly fur, Jerry the Bear is packed with sensors and circuit boards.

A child can feed him by swiping disc-shaped “food” over his mouth, check his glucose levels by squeezing his finger, and give him the appropriate dose of insulin by touching the insulin pen to one of six sites on his body.

An interactive monitor in his chest enables children to know how Jerry is feeling, adjust dosages, and plan snacks and meals. By taking care of Jerry, children learn to manage their disease, too.

Said Mr Aaron Horowitz, one of the creators of Jerry: “The broad vision… is to utilise personal robots to help in health education. Jerry is an example of that… his directive as a robot is to help kids understand their medical procedures.”

 

SARAH BALDWIN-BENEICH/SPARKNEWS

– See more at: http://www.straitstimes.com/the-big-story/impact-journalism-2014/story/making-diabetes-bearable-kids-20140920#sthash.C2N9lQU1.dpuf

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