Commissioned by De Nederlandse Hartstichting
This is a concept developed for children that are diagnosed with a heart disease. For each treatment or examination that these children have to go through, the children will be ‘rewarded’ with a small bead called a ‘Tikkie’. These ‘Tikkies’ can be collected on a ring in chronological order. Since there are so many different types, stages and treatment sequences of heart diseases, none of the rings will be the same. In the first 4 years of a child’s life, the parents or caretakers can collect the ‘Tikkies’ for their child.
This system has been created to make conversations about the things hospitalized children have to face easier. It comes with a journal where nurses, parents or caretakers or the child itself can write in day by day. For children between the ages of 4 and 11 there is a story called ‘Rapatiki Treasures’ about a quest on treasure island ‘Rapatiki’ that is used as a metaphor for their heart disease. The story and the Tikkies are connected through a map in which a child can travel from ‘Tikkie’ to ‘Tikkie’. That way all the steps in the healing and treatment process become visual, which will make it easier for these children to understand what to expect. And of course, as if on a real journey, there are postcards with typical Rapatiki sights that can be sent to friends at school or grandparents to let them know what is going on.
A pilot of the system is held in two University Medical Centers in The Netherlands: LUMC in Leiden and UMCG in Groningen.
If all goes well the system will be officially introduced around Summer 2012! Of course we will keep you posted about the exact date and time.