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New Program Brings Wildlife To Patients' Bedsides

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) -- A new program launched at Nicklaus Children's Hospital is bringing wildlife to patients' bedsides.

The hospital-only TV show called San Diego Zoo Kids is like Animal Planet for kids. It is an innovative television broadcast channel that provides family friendly, animal-oriented programming that is both entertaining and educational.

With the help of Zoo Miami, the program has now launched at the hospital.

"I saw elephants, cheetahs, I saw giraffes," said Gabriel Joseph who is receiving treatment at the hospital. "I'm seeing the animals and I've been hearing information about them."

"He's paying attention. He's not complaining of pain," said Peggy Joseph, Gabriel's mom "It just takes his mind off the pain."

Patients can watch segments about all kinds of animals to keep them entertained and help them heal.

"We're dedicated to providing a nurturing environment," said Dr. Narendra Kini, CEO of Miami Children's Health Systems. "One that helps our patients forget even for a few moments about their illnesses and injuries and focus on just being kids."

The program was funded by businessman and philanthropist T. Denny Sanford.

The channel is available on TV monitors in every patient room, as well as in waiting areas at Nicklaus Children's Hospital.

"When you make a connection with animals kids feel better. They feel happier," said Ron Magill with Zoo Miami. "It really prepares their bodies to heal faster."


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