Children’s Hospital researchers create new app for families facing cancer

Published: Oct. 13, 2021 at 6:24 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 13, 2021 at 7:18 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - When you look at Cole Murphy playing baseball, he seems like a typical 6 year old boy, but he’s been facing been battling cancer for years.

“Cole was diagnosed with leukemia when he was 3,” explains his Mom Madison Murphy. “When you first get diagnosed they don’t tell you a whole lot other than you have leukemia and we need to find out what kind and how to treat it. They give you a huge binder, and its full of information and if you have any questions you use the binder, and it’s cumbersome”

Now families like Cole’s have a new resource to sort through all that information, and the overwhelming questions that come with a cancer diagnosis. It’s called The KidsCare App and it was developed by researchers right here at Children’s Hospital of Alabama.

Children’s Hospital of Alabama New App to help families facing childhood cancer diagnosis
Children’s Hospital of Alabama New App to help families facing childhood cancer diagnosis(Murphy Family)

“It allows parents to search app to find the info that they need in real time for whatever occurrence is happening with their child,” explains researcher and developer Wendy Landier. She is a hematology oncology Professor at Children’s Hospital of Alabama.

Researchers teamed up with Cole’s parents and other families facing cancer to create the app, in conjunction with the Children’s Oncology Group, which includes more than 200 other hospitals nationwide.

“Especially in the beginning its really important for families to relearn how to care for their child, many of things we do when carrying for healthy children are different than when we are caring for children with cancer. They need access to information that is very applicable to their new situation with a child newly diagnosed with cancer that may be quite unfamiliar,” explains Dr. Landier.

“It was the biggest relief, it was amazing having it all right there,” says Madison. “All the scary stuff has been cut out, what to expect, type of medication and side effects, if you see this call your doctor if you see this its normal. Its helped a lot.”

Cole is now nearing the end of his treatments and his has a message for other children facing cancer, “Just be brave.”

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