Empowering young patients with information

A mobile app providing a virtual safe space to explore hospital.


Dom Raban

Dom is the Managing Director at Corporation Pop and the Founder of Xploro

"The Nominet Trust funding allowed us to really accelerate our product development. With Nominet Trust's help, we were able to build on that proof of concept and develop a fully functional prototype application which we've validated with child patients and clinicians."

Dom Raban, Managing Director Corporation Pop & Founder of Xploro

The challenge

When Dom Raban’s 13-year-old daughter was diagnosed with cancer he was shocked by the way she was kept in the dark about her treatment. While the care was excellent, she was given virtually no information about the people she would meet, the hospital environments she would be treated in or the technology and processes that would be used in her treatment. She left feeling isolated and ignored and consequently, like many other children and young people, she found visiting hospital deeply traumatic and she became resistant to treatments because their purpose wasn’t explained to her beforehand.

The aim of the project

Driven by his daughter’s experiences, Dom’s company Corporation Pop is creating Xploro (previously Patient’s Virtual Guide), an innovative mobile app that explores exactly what happens during a hospital visit through a series of fun and stimulating game-like experiences.

The app aims to reduce stress and anxiety by introducing children to hospital environments, staff and processes in a playful and informative way, using 3D augmented-reality models, an artificially intelligent avatar guide that supports conversational interaction and games that demystify complex technology.

Xploro is designed to put children and young people in control. Users begin by creating and customising an avatar guide to accompany them through the virtual hospital. The guide can then answer their questions and encourage them to discover the role of the doctors, nurses and equipment they’ll encounter in the real world. By creating a safe space, it gives children the chance to confront their fears while getting credible information.

Positive outcomes

The app achieves much more than just putting children and young people’ minds at ease. Research shows that reducing the stress of hospitalisation can boost outcomes and reduce recovery times.

Having a tested and validated prototype put Corporation Pop in a position where they could apply for larger pre-market funding. Recently the app has been successful in securing significant funding that will enable the team to build an MVP (Minimum Viable Product) that hopefully will be trialled in a hospital in the autumn of 2018.

Watch this short clip from Dom Raban’s talk at Being the Story event


"Raising money for early stage digital health projects in the current climate is very difficult. Nominet Trust fills a very important gap by providing funds that allow companies like ours to progress to the next stage of development."

Dom Raban, Founder of Xploro