Over the past month, McMaster Children’s hospital has seen a spike in injuries related to Pokemon Go in their emergency department.
According to a report from CBC news, at least a dozen children have checked into their emergency department since the game launched about a month ago. The number released in the report is probably very conservative since most patients don’t reveal what they were doing when they were injured.
In a statement, Chief of pediatric emergency medicine with Hamilton Health Sciences Dr. Anthony Crocco said:
“This isn’t a reason not to play the game. But videogames such as Pokemon Go may inadvertently lead children into dangerous places or situations. It’s up to parents to have a conversation with their kids and make sure that if the game is going to be played, it’s being played safely.”
However, most of the injuries have been minor and definitely could have been avoided. Crocco said that most of the children were lucky since some of the injuries could have actually been way worse.
“So many of the injuries we see in the Children’s Emergency Department can be prevented. We encourage children to be active. We also encourage parents to make sure that their kids are playing in a safe location and using appropriate safety gear.”
The augmented reality game, which overlays images of Pokemon characters over real life objects, became a worldwide sensation in less than a week. Pokemon Go is now available to download for free from the App Store. The game requires any device running iOS 8.0 or later and contains in-app purchases that range between $1.39 and $139.99.