TAVARES - Patients and their families receiving care in Cornerstone Hospice and Palliative Care's hospice houses and partner facilities can now connect instantly with loved ones far away.
Using new iPads, patients and their families are able to use Apple's FaceTime video chat application to talk to and see loved ones who cannot be by their bedside. They also have access to a growing number of applications that allow for downloading books, streaming music, playing games and much more.
The new iPads, called "iPops" are outfitted on a lightweight stand that can be moved easily throughout a patient's room or to another location in the hospice house.
"Our hospice care team has even used the iPads to allow a man in our care to communicate with his wife who is in a nursing home and unable to visit him," said Derenda "D.J." Hamilton, Cornerstone's IT director. "Since introducing the iPads, our nursing staff has identified even more ways to use the devices because the technology is easy to use and applications are diverse."
A $10,000 grant from the J. Milton Hoffa and Nellie E. Hoffa Memorial Foundation provided the initial funding to purchase iPads to replace outdated PCOW's (personal computer on wheels) that were introduced to the hospice houses in 2004.
Sprint helped set up the iPads and facilitated initial training. Each "iPop" costs approximately $1,000 and Cornerstone Hospice ultimately hopes to have one device in each of the 46 rooms in the hospice houses and in partner facility Winter Park Towers.