5 Tech Resources to Support Families with Illnesses or Disabilities

These apps can turn medical jargon into kid-friendly language, help kids communicate and more.

Cristen Carson Reat
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Cristen Carson Reat
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Proloquo2Go

By AssistiveWare

Proloquo2GoProloquo2Go_icon is an award-winning symbol-supported communication app that provides a voice to over 150,000 individuals who cannot speak. The app is designed to promote language development and grow communication skills. Its innovative features support users of all ages, parents, teachers and therapists to quickly personalize the vocabulary and settings.

  • Tip: When considering alternative communication, have fun trying out sample voices from nine countries with a variety of accents for kids and adults.

Price: $249.99
BridgingApps Review
iTunes

Simply Sayin’ – Medical Jargon for Kids

By MediaKube, LLC

simply_sayin_iconThe award-winning Simply Sayin’™ app uses pictures, sounds and a kid-friendly glossary of terms to facilitate clear conversations between the health care provider, child and family. Used by child life specialists in hospitals around the world, the app also gives parents a way to promote positive health care experiences for their kids before heading to see the doctor.

  • Tip: Before your child’s next well-check visit with the doctor, use the drawings section of the app to review the parts of the body with your child in a fun, relaxed way to prepare them for what to expect.

Price: Free
BridgingApps Review
iTunes
Google Play

CareSync

By CareSync, Inc.

caresync_icon

CareSync is available via the web or on mobile devices to make it simple to access, organize and securely share your and your loved ones’ important health information. This powerful software functions as a personal or family health and medical information organization system that puts you in control of how and when you share your health information. CareSync empowers families with information and encourages people to be an active part of their health care team.

  • Tip: Download the free version of the app and practice uploading your child’s immunization records and sharing them with your child’s school, family member or summer camp, when needed.

Price: Free with in-app purchases
BridgingApps Review*
iTunes
Google Play 
*App is also web-based.

CaringBridge

By CaringBridge.org

caringbridge_app_iconThe purpose of CaringBridge is to connect people with the support of family and friends, and it is a self-described “caring social network.” It transforms your personal connections into instant support that can also be shared and expanded to assist someone going through a difficult life change, such as an emergency hospital visit, an unexpected injury or diagnosis of disease, premature birth or lengthy rehabilitation.

  • Tip: Once you have created a free account, upload a picture of yourself or your loved one, then write four sentences to share what it will mean to you to have consistent support on your CaringBridge page.

Price: Free
BridgingApps Review*
iTunes
Google Play 
*App is also web-based.

MyChart

By Epic

mychart_iconBy creating a free MyChart account you can manage your health information and communicate with your doctor on your mobile devices, including Apple Watch. With MyChart you can securely review test results, medications and immunization history; stay in touch with your doctor; manage your appointments; view and pay bills; access your family’s health information and more.

  • Tip: Once you have created a free account, send a message to your physician letting them know that you would like to communicate and receive appointment summaries via MyChart.

Price: Free
BridgingApps Review*
iTunes
Google Play
*App is also web-based.

Cristen Carson Reat is the co-founder and program director of BridgingApps, a program of Easter Seals Greater Houston. Cristen holds a M.A. degree from the University of Texas at Austin, graduated from the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California, and is certified through the Assistive Technology Applications Program at California State University. She is the mother of two sons, one of whom has Down syndrome. Cristen is a founding member of Toca Boca’s diversity advisory board.

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