Video games have been blamed for causing bad behavior in teens, but now a game with a zapping nanobot named Roxxi aims to persuade young cancer patients to engage in behaviors that will help fight their disease.
The game is called "Re-Mission," and starting today, Cigna HealthCare, a provider of medical benefits plans with corporate offices in Connecticut, and a California nonprofit, HopeLab, look to make Re-Mission more widely available.
Cigna and HopeLab suggest that "Re-Mission" is part pep talk and part entertaining informational session, and in testing, the game has demonstrated that it can energize teens and young adults to embrace their cancer treatments more aggressively.
According to Cigna and HopeLab, the free game is "a challenging 3-D shooter with 20 levels of game play in which players control a nanobot named Roxxi as she travels through the bodies of fictional cancer patients to destroy cancer cells, battle bacterial infections, and manage side effects associated with cancer and cancer treatments."
"We know that behavior is a key contributor to health," Glenn Pomerantz, Cigna HealthCare's medical director, said in a statement. "HopeLab's Re-Mission has demonstrated that video games have the power to help teenagers better adhere to their cancer treatment and embrace key behaviors that improve their health and quality of life."
(By Chris Reidy, Globe staff)