To help the children suffering from cancer like dangerous disease, a robotic expert Aaron Horowitz has developed a robotic duck named the My Special Aflac Duck. It has also won the CES 2018 award under the category of Tech for a Better World.
The My Special Aflac duck is designed to support children undergoing treatment with cancer. It features a port-a-cath with an RFID chip. It helps to educate children about the chemotherapy method. It comes with RFID-enabled emoji cards, and it can be used to express the emotions of children. Aflac plans to distribute My Special Duck to all children diagnosed with cancer in the US at free of cost. Currently, there are around 16,000 children are being diagnosed with cancer.
The duck is now undergoing further testing, and by the end of this year, it will be available all over the world. Horowitzh partner with the Rhode Island-based company to Sproutal. The duck is a part of Aflac’s ongoing Aflac Childhood Cancer Campaign, and it features naturalistic movements and joyful play to help distract children coping with cancer. The main aim behind this is to give the children a smart and comforting companion which can help them to eliminate loneliness from them during treatment.
Aaron J. Horowitz, CEO, and co-founder of Sproute stated that in some cases childhood cancer treatment duration could go above 1,000 says, and there must be something which can help alleviate some of the burdens, and that is the main reason behind this robotics duck.
Many children’s hospitals and nursing homes have been using robots for social companionship and emotional health. Some of the robotic devices look like quintessential robots and animal toys. Contributing this, Japanese researchers also have developed a baby seal, duck and Paro to eliminate a person’s stress in the same way a real pet might.
Sproutel’s first social robot was Jerry, the Bear. It is an interactive companion which has been helping kids affected with diabetes to manage their health. The children take care of Jerry by doing some daily habits. Like, feeding, giving insulin and tracking blood glucose level.
The has been designed in such as way that it can produce many relaxing sounds like the sound of rainforest, sounds of a beach and more. It includes a deep-breathing technique and children can mimic it and comes with a tube which imitates chemotherapy injections.