MMS Medical has been involved in Go Baby Go program in Ireland since its launch. The primary objective of the Go Baby Go program is to provide modified toy cars to children with special needs to use as a powered mobility devices for fun, function and exploration. Research shows that allowing kids the chance to play and explore their environment with cars, like the adapted play cars, help shape their skills and experiences later in life.
The Go Baby Go program began in 2012 with founder Dr. Cole Galloway, PT, PhD University of Delaware. Integrating assistive technology, families, clinicians, and community partners, the program provides children with mobility limitations the opportunity for movement, mobility and socialization. The program has been expanding globally ever since.
The toy cars are adapted to make them suitable for children with mobility limitations. Seating supports are made with standard object, such as pool floats and foam cushions. A switch is placed on the steering wheel for easy access. The cars are enjoyable for the children and provides an opportunity for unstructured play with other toddlers and increases social interaction. The adapted cars are safe and are the right height for use allowing the kids to move themselves independently improving skills in a fun environment.
There are real benefits to children using these adapted cars, giving them a chance to play and socialize with their peers more easily. Research has shown that independent mobility is linked to cognitive, social, motor and language and other developmental benefits in young children. Being pushed in a stroller or being carried from one place to another is fundamentally different from having active control over one’s own exploration no matter what age, which is where the developmental gains are seen. The adapted cars are an ideal introduction of younger children who may require a powerchair in the future. Power chairs aren’t usually an option for children under 5 so these adapted cars are filling a much need gap in the development of the child.
In 2013 Permobil began working with Dr. Cole Galloway and the GoBabyGo program. The Explorer Mini is a result of the years of research and development by the Permobil Team. The Explorer Mini which was designed to provide an opportunity for independent mobility while promoting developmental milestones. The Explorer Mini is a medical device that looks like a toy, but has been designed to promote early exploration and self-initiated mobility for children with mobility impairments. It has been rigorously tested and gone through regulatory approval to be considered a medical device. We are delighted to welcome the Permobil Explorer Mini.