The features of computer and video games — advanced graphics, stunning realism, immersive interactivity, structured challenges — offer unique solutions to a variety of health and health care issues. Whether it's teens managing a chronic disease, stroke victims in physical rehabilitation, individuals looking to be more active and manage their weight, public health officials planning for potential disease outbreaks, or nurses and doctors seeking to hone their skills, game-based solutions may challenge, motivate and engage users in a way that no other medium can.
Through the Pioneer Portfolio, RWJF has been a leader in the field of health games, investing approximately $9 million since 2003. The Games for Health project forges significant new connections between the worlds of games and health. Beginning in 2004, Games for Health has held annual national and regional conferences that bring together game designers and developers, researchers, medical professionals, educators, entrepreneurs, policy-makers, and others to share information about games technology and its application to health. The project also catalogs the use of games in health, assists current game development, spreads best practices, shares research results, and explores new game concepts that might improve health and health care. "Games have an ability to structure information such that a complex topic is more accessible. Videogame interaction is also, done right, highly motivating," says Ben Sawyer, the project director. "When you're talking about the future of health care you're often talking about obtaining qualities modern-day videogames excel at. So why not go to a great source of those qualities?"
Amount Awarded $989,250.00
Awarded on: 9/18/2007
Time frame: 9/15/2007 - 3/14/2012
Grant Number: 63001