Microsoft has partnered with nonprofit organization Companions in Courage to deliver hundreds of Xbox 360 kiosks to children's hospitals across the US. The consoles will include select games, video content, and a private network allowing hospitalized children across the country to play games and chat over Xbox Live.
Microsoft and Companions in Courage are celebrating this partnership and the installation of the first wave of Xbox 360 kiosks with three simultaneous events today at Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital of New York-Presbyterian, Children's Hospital & Regional Medical Center of Seattle, and the Children's Hospital of Orange County in California.
The customized Xbox 360 kiosks are pre-loaded with Y-rated TV programs, G-rated movies, and games rated E and E10+. Xbox 360 Headsets and Xbox Live Vision Cameras are also included to allow young patient to chat (via voice, text, and video) and play games with other children in select hospitals included in the dedicated Xbox Live network. The Xbox 360's parental controls system, Family Settings, restricts access to content outside ratings parameters and limits the time patients can spend with the console.
The Companions in Courage Foundation builds "Lion's Den" interactive playrooms in hospitals throughout North America. The playrooms provide areas for group games, "pods" for semi-private conversations, and computer stations equipped with a wide range of input devices. Celebrities and role models also make regular visits and online interactions to meet hospitalized children in the playrooms.
CiC founder and National Hockey League Hall of Famer Pat LaFontaine said, "Entertainment, creativity and personal connections can be important factors in alleviating some of the isolation and discomfort these children experience each day. Xbox 360 offers young patients a fun escape through games, TV shows, movies and positive interactions with others over the Xbox Live network. These gaming stations are a perfect complement to the interactive playrooms."