Interactive robot befriends hospital's youngest patients to soothe away their anxiety

Photo by Carline Jean (Sun Sentinel)Tommy Boegler, 4, of Tamarac, Fla. with MEDi at his side during a visit to Broward Health. The hospital is one of eight hospitals nationwide using a child-friendly robot named MEDi to help the littlest patients overcome the anxiety and fear associated with most medical procedures.

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Never fear, MEDi the robot is here, ready to calm the nerves of children scared of the hospital and all the things that go with it — like prickly needles and cavernous hallways and mysterious medical equipment.

MEDi, a blue and white robot now on staff Broward Health Children's Hospital, has just the right touch when it comes to keeping little ones calm. This nifty little robot, whose name is short for Medicine and Engineering Design Intelligence, resembles a toy at just 2 feet tall and 15 pounds, but he's been a big hit with the hospital's youngest patients.

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