WHEN THE ZOO COMES TO YOU — IN THE HOSPITAL
What better way to take your mind off being in the hospital than lions, tigers and bears?
University Children’s Health, the pediatric treatment and innovation arm of University Health System, was selected to receive the San Diego Zoo Kids closed-circuit television channel in early 2017. The channel has programs produced exclusively for medical facilities that serve pediatric patients and their families.
Businessman and philanthropist T. Denny Sanford funded the creation and development of the channel, and while a gift from National University, a private, nonprofit university in San Diego, made the channel available on TV monitors in every patient room at University Hospital, as well as in waiting areas.
“San Diego Zoo Kids is a remarkable and helpful diversion for kids in the hospital, keeping their minds off their illness or injury,” said Michael Roussos, administrator of University Hospital. “It makes them feel better and heal better. We’re very happy to have been selected to be part of this great partnership with the San Diego Zoo and our own San Antonio Zoo.”
The San Diego Zoo Kids channel offers up-close video encounters with animals, stories about caring for animals, quizzes about animals and habitats, and a wide variety of short video vignettes hosted by San Diego Zoo Global ambassador Rick Schwartz. Viewers can see video from the San Diego Zoo’s famous Panda Cam and other online cameras. The channel also features animal stories from the San Antonio Zoo and more than a dozen accredited zoos and aquariums in North America.
“We are extremely excited to partner with the San Diego Zoo to share our passion for animal care, education and conservation with kids at the University Hospital in San Antonio,” said Tim Morrow, chief executive officer and executive director of the San Antonio Zoo. “This is yet another example of how our zoos continue to inspire people, and more importantly our littlest fans, to love, engage, act and protect animals and the places they live.”
In late 2017, University Children’s Health and University Health System became the exclusive healthcare partner for the San Antonio Zoo.
San Diego Zoo Kids debuted in 2013 at Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego. Since then, it has been installed in 82 children’s hospitals and Ronald McDonald Houses in 27 states across the United States, and in facilities in Mexico, Canada and Australia.