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December 27, 1995

Sick Kids Find Help in a Cyberspace World

JAMA. 1995;274(24):1899-1901. doi:10.1001/jama.1995.03530240009003

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YOUNGSTERS at four hospitals scattered across the country recently "met" with a movie mogul and a four-star general to roam a computer-generated world of tropical rain forests, caves with hidden passages, and other inviting destinations— a virtual playground that its developers hope will diminish the pain, anxieties, and isolation of children hospitalized due to serious and chronic illness.

The occasion was a demonstration of the multimillion-dollar Starbright World network, during which young patients at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York, NY, visited with movie director Steven Spielberg, General H. Norman Schwarzkopf (ret), and children from three other hospitals participating in the linkup.

Spielberg, director of such films as "Jurassic Park," "Schindler's List," and "E.T. The Extraterrestrial," heads the foundation that is creating and financing the multimedia network. Schwarzkopf is leading the nationwide capital campaign to finance it.

Mount Sinai and the other three hospitals participating in the network— Children's

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