Helping Kids With Cancer - Meet Aflac's New Robotic Duck
Aflac has developed a new high tech, interactive duck especially for children battling cancer. Unveiled at the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show, the duck has already been recognized with a 2018 CES Tech for a Better World Innovation Award. "My Special Aflac Duck," part of Aflac's ongoing Aflac Childhood Cancer Campaign and developed by Sproutel, features naturalistic movements and joyful play to help distract children coping with cancer. With four patents pending and a year of child-centered research behind it, My Special Aflac Duck is a smart, comforting companion that helps children feel less alone by using interactive technology during their cancer treatment. A web-based app enables children to mirror their care routines, including medical play, feeding and bathing via augmented-reality. The smart companion emulates young patients' moods, endures the same often-painful therapies, and dances, quacks and nuzzles to help comfort children when they need it most.
"For 22 years, Aflac, our employees and our independent sales agents have demonstrated a commitment to help families facing childhood cancer, including contributing more than $120 million to this cause," Aflac Chairman and CEO Dan Amos said. "We are taking this commitment to a new level, lending our iconic Aflac Duck to this mission in an innovative way like we have never done before. Our goal is to put a My Special Aflac Duck in the hands of the nearly 16,000 children in the U.S. who are newly diagnosed with cancers each year, free of charge, so that no child ever has to face cancer alone."
In early 2018, Aflac and Sproutel will begin delivering the My Special Aflac Duck to children at the Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta for further testing. The smart companion is expected to be available to children with cancer nationwide in winter 2018-2019.
For more information and videos of My Special Aflac Duck in action, read the full press release and visit AflacChildhoodCancer.org.