Children's hospital streams live music to patient rooms


Sony and Alder Hey Children’s Hospital partner to broadcast live musical performances to patients in their own rooms

Sony has come up with an imaginative solution to keep young patients entertained during their time at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital.

Made possible thanks to a donation from Alder Hey Children’s Charity; the innovative project centres on a mini broadcast studio built by Sony, where performances in the hospital’s atrium can be captured and produced with professional quality.

Content is then streamed live for patients to enjoy from the comfort and privacy of their own rooms.

“Music, stories and poetry readings are welcome distractions for children during their time in hospital,” said Jörg Fritz, project manager at Sony Professional Europe who worked closely with teams at Alder Hey and system integrator, Video South, to deliver the solution.

“We wanted to create a solution that would be of particular benefit to children who can’t be moved from their bedrooms.”

A specially-created stage in Alder Hey’s large, bright atrium is the focal point for regular shows by musicians, poets and other entertainers who regularly visit the hospital.

Now, songs, story readings, and more are recorded using a PMW-300K2 XDCAM camcorder. An extra view is captured by a remotely-controlled SRG-300SE PTZ camera that streams Full HD video.

Audio and video sources are mixed using Anycast Touch, a compact all-in-one live production system that is easily operated via an intuitive touch panel. And footage is assembled using Sony’s Catalyst Edit software.

Polished, professional results are then streamed across Alder Hey’s hospital TV network for viewing on screens in patient rooms and BRAVIA Professional Displays in public areas.

For young people who aren’t able to leave their bedrooms, this potentially-stressful time can be made just a little bit more bearable

Clare White, chief executive at Alder Hey Children’s Charity, said: “Alder Hey is one of Europe’s busiest and brightest children’s hospitals, treating 275,000 children a year, plus 60,000 children a year through our accident and emergency department.

“As such we are delighted to have helped create a unique performance space that brings some welcome colour and fun to the many young patients and their families who visit Alder Hey.

“The fantastic new editing suite means we are able to provide entertainment to, not only people in the atrium, but direct to our patients and families who are not able to leave their wards.”

Fritz added: “For young people who aren’t able to leave their bedrooms, this potentially-stressful time can be made just a little bit more bearable. What’s more, the complete production system we’ve created for Alder Hey can be operated by a single person.”

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