Bungie Foundation taps Jamf to take its iPads for Kids program nationwide

By Jonah Comstock
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The Bungie Foundation, the nonprofit arm of the video game company behind the Halo and Destiny franchises, is scaling up an initiative to get iPads into children’s hospitals with the help of Apple device management company Jamf.

The foundation’s iPads for Kids program gets iPads preloaded with age-appropriate games into the hands of pediatric patients at no charge to the hospital. It’s been running at Seattle Children’s Hospital since 2012.

“Up until last year we had been managing that program really manually,” Foundation manager Christine Edwards told MobiHealthNews. “… We had a full-time staff member who was manually loading apps full of custom content, hand-delivering those devices, and collecting them upon patient discharge, then manually wiping them all back to factory settings. So that was a very time-consuming process and it really limited the ability to broaden our scope. It could only expand to the extent that his time would allow in any given day.”

So the foundation partnered with Jamf, a mobile device management company that focuses exclusively on Apple products and has recently begun to expand into the healthcare sphere. Jamf has created a system to automatically wipe devices when a patient is discharged or transferred. The system uses an HL7 protocol to query the hospital’s EMR so it knows when a patient concludes their stay.

When a new patient arrives in a room, they find a factory reset device waiting for them which will walk them through a short setup process, then give them access to a library of entertainment apps appropriate for their age. Users can even request additional apps, which are then vetted by The Bungie Foundation. The intent is to create a positive experience for the patient, while also maintaining the level of device security on the hospital network required by HIPAA.

Now that the program is automated and scalable, and with additional funding from Child’s Play, the Seattle-area nonprofit founded by the creators of the webcomic Penny Arcade and organizers of the PAX gaming conventions, The Bungie Foundation is looking to expand beyond Seattle.

“Our vision is to expand to any children’s hospital that is interested in receiving this program. The program is 100 percent free of charge to the hospital and is able to provide a vast array of entertainment opportunities for their patients that they otherwise might not be able to receive,” Edwards said. “… We’re very close to beginning installation of this program at several different hospitals and have quite a few more on the docket for 2018 and 2019.”