Jim Carol, Chairman, Co-Founder & CEO and Taylor Carol, Co-Founder & Chief Evangelist
The summer of 2006 brought with itself a harsh reality for the Carols—their son Taylor was diagnosed with cancer. For the next five years, the family fought the battle against the ailment giving Taylor a triumphant victory—but the experience changed their lives forever. As a parent of a cancer survivor, Jim was grateful for the video gaming technology that gave his son joy and hope during his darkest days and decided to repay to the community by providing the same joy to other kids fighting life-threatening diseases. Jim founded GameChanger charity to help sick children through gaming technology like AR/VR from tech giants. A decade into serving patients from over 20,000 hospital rooms made Jim realize the challenges associated with age-old patient engagement practices. None of these hospitals were taking advantage of the advanced technologies for their patient engagement initiatives. Most patient engagement systems worked with a television accompanied by a clutter of wires in their infrastructure offering the same set of dull content being presented. As a serial tech entrepreneur with three decades of experience in the mobile and video streaming industry, Jim identified a major opportunity for improvement within the patient engagement space. “Today, humans use tech that is dominated by a device rather than looking at a piece of glass hanging on the wall.” This realization led Jim to found ZOTT, which aims to revolutionize the patient engagement scenario completely. As opposed to setting up numerous wires in a hospital building, ZOTT’s patent-pending, cloud-based content distribution platform leverages the hospital WiFi network, allowing every web-enabled device on the premise to access a whole new array of content for patients and caregivers alike. “We have completely up leveled patient engagement by empowering any device with internet connectivity to access video on demand, live daily shows, virtual games and educational learning under one umbrella,” says Jim Carol, chairman, co-founder, and CEO of ZOTT.
Today, the ZOTT team is backed by top-level executives from the world’s best media streaming and gaming companies, making it highly capable of redefining the patient’s journey in a hospital. The leaders have been an integral part of building some of the most user-friendly and popular sites available today. This includes the company’s CTO, Jon Shipman, who is a founding member of Twitch, one of the largest streaming media companies in the world.
Enhancing Patient Satisfaction
ZOTT’s recipe for success is the unique blend of quality content, cloud-based client approach, device-agnostic nature, safety of patients and social strategy that has made it a transformative patient engagement platform.
The ZOTT platform provides personalized content for each user, be it patients, family members, or the caregivers. It offers a catalog of popular YouTube and Twitch stars who live stream exclusive content directly to hospital communities through ZOTT. Not only media stars, but patients among various wards and caregivers can also live stream with each other to present special events like celebrity visits. “When I was undergoing my treatment, I spent six months in the hospital totally cut out from the social world. This made us realize that patients feel isolated and lonely, so we created live streams that bring a sense of community to keep in touch with the outside world,” says Taylor Carol, co-founder and chief evangelist at ZOTT. At the same time, the company ensures that the content is safe for patients so they can watch their favorite YouTube content without hospital staff worrying. “We have a dedicated team of moderators who are on the platform 24/7 to make sure the experience is always safe and enjoyable for patients.” On the other hand, patients and accompanying family members can view popular TV shows or linear TV on their web-enabled devices through ZOTT due to its device-agnostic nature. “In such a stressful environment, we know how important it is for family members to grab a cup of coffee and watch their favorite programs or news to feel relaxed. We have taken care of that as well,” says Jim.
We have completely up leveled patient engagement by empowering any device with internet connectivity to access video on demand, live daily shows, virtual games and educational learning under one umbrella
Interestingly, the company has created exceptional augmented reality experiences exclusively for patients, family members, and caregivers with the help of Google ARCore. “In our constant discussions with hospital staff, we have realized how much it means for patients, especially kids, to be able to walk around and feel empowered,” says Jim. So, the company has created AR experiences that allow patients to move around with a mobile device and interact with various creatures and landscapes. These interactions encourage patients and caregivers to have truly compelling and social experiences. “ZOTT is a connecting tissue between the most advanced technology and personalized content,” says Taylor.
The platform also fortifies patients admitted to hospitals with Minecraft virtual playgrounds, allowing patients to build, play, and interact with other hospital patients in a ZOTT-exclusive Minecraft universe. ZOTT also offers a library of over a million dollars worth of codes from Steam, a digital distribution platform for video games. Patients can download the games through ZOTT and use them even after leaving the hospital. Besides, the company also offers a comprehensive library of HTML file games that patients can access through any device to play immersive and engaging games.
In addition, the ZOTT platform takes care of educational content that ranges from the academic studies the patients may have missed in school due to illness to music lessons, art classes, and coding sessions in HTML or Java for those interested. “When Taylor was undergoing his treatment, he missed nearly 4 years of school. We wanted to make sure children can have complete study material at their disposal so that when they recuperate, they can continue without a glitch,” says Jim. Moreover, ZOTT has revitalized traditional, boring medical content into an interesting and informational experience with the help of comic book creators, Claymation masterminds, and YouTube stars both for patients as well as clinicians.
"ZOTT is a connecting tissue between the most advanced technology and personalized content"
A Data-driven Approach
As a highly customizable solution, ZOTT adopts a data-driven approach, allowing healthcare providers as well as patients to customize content to their needs and desires. As part of its data-driven approach, the company builds its library of research and literature in partnership with caregivers, doctors, and industry professionals to enhance patients’ lives at a personal and clinical level. “We provide the content with a degree of sensitivity and attention to care while creating incredible user experiences,” says Taylor.
An interesting implementation of the ZOTT platform was in two highly renowned and large hospitals, C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital and Methodist Hospital in San Antonio, where the platform was up and running within 15 minutes. “We went in with no wires or infrastructure devices but set ourselves up with their WiFi and our services,” says Jim. With ZOTT in place, the hospitals saw a significant reduction in infrastructure requirements as no wires or devices were moving from room to room. Furthermore, clinical outcomes improved as the patient experience improved due to distraction therapy and the establishment of a social support network. In another instance, a hospital had a basketball team visiting and some patients were unable to meet the players. With ZOTT, the players were able to interact with the patients through live streaming and chat systems that allowed patients to be a part of the community without feeling isolated.
ZOTT encapsulates the values of integrity, honesty, and humbleness that drive its parent organization— GameChanger. The company is investing in expanding its market presence to impact the greatest number of healthcare providers and patients through the ground-breaking technology that it offers. With the aim of reviving communal and intellectual stimulation among patients, the company is working with numerous tech giants like YouTube, Microsoft, Twitch, Google, and Amazon to redefine the patient experience.