Success! You're on the list.

Success! You're on the list.

VR app for children undergoing surgery receives $3.1M funding

Little Journey
Image credits: Little Journey

Up to 75% of children will experience significant anxiety before a healthcare procedure, which needs sedative medication or physical restraint. The adherence to the protocol is worsened by the negative impact of having multiple repeat procedures.

London-based VR app startup Little Journey reduces this anxiety and stress for both parents and children. It does this by preparing children and their families for their upcoming procedure. Also, it reduces the negative effects associated with high stress and anxiousness, ultimately improving outcomes and adherence, and speeding recovery.

Investment from Octopus Ventures

Now, Little Journey has just picked up $3.1 million in funding led by London VC Octopus Ventures, which also backed Flock and Kita recently.

The investment will enable the business to build on that momentum through maturing the offering and international expansion.

Dr Chis Evans, Founder, Little Journey said, “We’re passionate about improving the experience of children coming to hospital and providing data-driven personalised care. This investment will help us support more children undergoing a wider range of procedures all over the world.”

Joe Stringer, Partner, Health, Octopus Ventures, commented, “Chris, Sophie and the Little Journey team have developed a platform that not only has a hugely positive impact on the kids it’s built to help, but reduces costs for hospitals delivering paediatric care and smooths the creation of new, better treatments for children.”

Appoints new board member

In addition to the investment, the Board of Little Journey appointed Nicolaus Henke, a Senior Partner Emeritus of McKinsey and ex-chairman of McKinsey’s advanced analytics and artificial intelligence firm, QuantumBlack, as board chair.

Nicolaus Henke commented, “it’s impressive to see what Little Journey has built already, with many important wins. Early studies show that pediatric patients have reduced anxiety by 32% throughout their hospital journey. Parents gain a new channel for advice and information, a significant unmet need in pediatric care. Providers of pediatric care see more effective operations, and clinical trials with pediatric patients in rare diseases see more effective operations.

What does Little Journey do?

Little Journey was created in 2018 by anaesthetist Dr Chris Evans and human-centred product designer Sophie Copley, the Little Journey app features animated characters that explain what will happen before, during and after the procedure. It will also display relaxation animations to help children develop positive coping strategies and games to distract them during their time in hospital.

There are modules to help families understand who they will meet throughout their journey, take virtual hospital tours and track adherence to their medication.

The app has been co-created with children, parents and carers to give the best possible experience for the whole family. For parents and carers, information is fed into the app at key moments along the journey with checklists, support information and guidelines to help the family and child prepare mentally and physically.

The Little Journey experience can be tailored to the child’s age, hospital site and healthcare procedure. As per the company, has proven to reduce anxiety by 32%, recovery time by 30%, and on the day cancellations by 42%.

Talking about clinical trials, children and their families get access to the Little Journey app, including easy to understand and timely information and a gamified medication monitor to guide them through the trial.

What it offers for hospitals?

Besides the app, there is a Little Journey platform, which includes management portals for hospitals and for clinical trials. For hospitals, it provides healthcare staff with a portal to choose the content in a patient’s app, build virtual patient pathways and instantly edit key information. Furthermore, they can give each patient a personalised and end-to-end support throughout their hospital journey.

Related Posts

Get daily funding news briefings in the tech world delivered right to your inbox.

Enter Your Email
join our newsletter. thank you