A Therapeutic Robot Teddy Bear Will Play With Kids in the Hospital

From Gizmodo:

Here’s Huggable—Teddy Ruxpin for the new millennium. It’s a talking blue teddy bot designed to care for and comfort hospitalized children.

The New York Times reported today it’s currently being used in a study that gathers kids’ physiological responses to various stress-alleviating stimuli to determine whether Huggable offers ill children therapeutic benefits or not. Eventually, that data will be integrated in the robo-bear to make it automated and able to respond to kids’ various needs.

Right now, the bear is more of a “high-tech puppet,” the Times writes. An adult down the hall controls the bear, serving as its voice, shooting the breeze with the young patient. The robot’s a collaboration between MIT’s Media Lab and Boston Children’s Hospital, which has invested half a million bucks to research social robots.

Bystanders who do CPR save lives; cells phones can help find them

From Reuters:

Having a bystander perform CPR before a rescue team arrives more than doubles the odds of surviving cardiac arrest, according to one of two new studies from Sweden in the New England Journal of Medicine.

The second report found a cell-phone-based system that alerts trained volunteers when someone nearby needs CPR can significantly increase the chances of a victim getting immediate help.