Infusionarium – Creating healing spaces

Roger Holzberg – Infusionarium – How to create a healing space for cancer patients.

So we call the program The Infusionarium.

Marzena Kmiecik: I love the name. Who came up with the name, you did?

I’m not sure probably me. I mean it’s a very Disney kind of word but chemotherapy infusion is where we start. Dr. Saunders my partner says it’s a meshing of infusion and aquarium right? Aquarium being full immersive and infusion the way we treat. We started off in the pediatric space because we could and because it’s a very delicate population.

We were very fortunate to have a wonderful article published in the New York Times, and the reaction to the article was incredibly positive and had a lot of adults saying “hello! I went through chemotherapy, I would like to have been on the international space station, I’d love to go to jet propulsion laboratory and have a planetary protection engineer help me learn what it’s likes to pilot a rover on Mars. What about us right?”

Also other modalities, radiation therapy, dialysis, physical therapy….What would it do to the mind of a senior citizen who’s beginning to lose touch with reality via dementia to be able to summit Mt. Everest or swim on the Great Barrier Reef. So yes we want to expand and find out what immersive healing experience can do for a number of other illnesses and also another host of different modalities. So yes we would like to grow as quickly as we can and learn as quickly as we can.

Marzena Kmiecik: What do you need to accomplish that?

We really would like to partner with some of the companies, let’s say the Google’s and Amazons of the world. Right now we’re powering our connected live events out of Google Hangouts, and it’s incredible, it’s basically a mini town hall meeting but we are taking group of patients to places like Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Monterey Bay Aquarium, backstage at DisneyLand and Google is powering that and we think that’s incredible. We would love for them to help us grow this program, right, to grow it and scale it.

Our immersive learning experiences for parents after their children get through treatment to really focus on the healing and well being phase of the journey, the journey that we can’t build for as a medical establishment because doctors can’t get paid for their patients being well. We really focus on that in our survival guides and e-books, we would love to partner with Amazon to help disseminate those farther for anybody who is on the patient journey and figure out a way to do that. So we would love to start building partnerships in different ways and even on the smallest scales.

Marzena Kmiecik: I was going to ask you, on an individual level how can people help to spread the word and get the community excited?

Well on a much smaller level the Orange County model is very interesting, so the Hyundai US corporate office is in Orange County California, the Children Hospital in Orange County is one of their corporate programs that they support. We are finding as we are beginning to develop our next half of dozen and our next half a dozen infusion at this point in various stages of preproduction and development, they are being sponsored in different ways by different organizations so we are coming up with some creative models with hospitals to create them and it turns out they are not very expensive.

Marzena Kmiecik: What is the cost of one just to get an idea?

Well it depend how many seats it is, how many screens it is but it’s roughly in the $40,000 per seat range. So each seat has its own screen and the screen then wraps cinematically around the seats, because there are times where you have a group of kids and they will be done with the emergent stuff and they will say “look for the next little while headphones on, Facebook, homework or whatever, I just want to be in my own world that’s what would make me feel the best”.  Let me just be on my Facebook page for the next hour right or whatever right , so every kid would go in their own mode with headphones on. It’s roughly in the $40,000 per seat range.

Marzena Kmiecik: It’s really durable especially for corporations to invest in something like that.

Yes. The other thing that is scalable, that we are excited about is, so the immersive experiences are scalable, the immersive experience go into the library so different kids in different regions tell us where they want to heal. Kids from another region can say “oh I want to see what the Latino kids from Miami thought was cool” The Latino kids from Orange County, California go “what did the Cubans thought were cool” right. That’s also I think a growth experience for patients. Our live events they are essential giant hall meetings, they can scale enormously time zones per minute.

Marzena Kmiecik: Have you thought about developing countries? Would that be something that’s possible to invest in?

Ironically yes. My son who spent the last year teaching Ecuador at a Junior college there, I went down to visit him a couple months ago and is sponsor family said “your father is coming you must stay with us, you’ll sleep on the sofa, he’ll sleep in your room”. Their eldest son wants to develop an Infusionarium program for the Keto Children’s Hospital and believes he can do it for a much lower price threshold than $40,000 for a chair which he probably can in Keto.

Honestly this is probably a really stupid thing to say if you have any investor or VC listening to this video. We formed this company to make money we didn’t form this company to become billionaires. If the Keto pediatric hospital comes to us and says “we want your programs, we want them in Spanish, we want your learning channel stuff and this is what we can afford we are going to find a way to make it work. We need to be able to pay our bills but we need to be able to provide healing at this level in a larger way.