A hospital in California has come up with a clever way to soothe anxious young patients on their way to the operating room.

Rather than being wheeled into surgery on a gurney, youngsters at Doctors Medical Center in Modesto can now drive into surgery in little toy mini-cars.

The tiny surgical patients have the choice of driving either a black Mercedes or a pink Volkswagen Beetle – and if the children are incapable of driving the hot rods, they can also be piloted by an adult with a remote control.

Though the Mercedes was purchased by the hospital last year, the Volkswagen was recently donated by an employee and her family.

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Thus far, the cars have been a huge hit amongst the patients, and staffers say that they have been hugely successful in relieving the children’s anxieties.

“When they find out they can go into the operating room riding in a cool little car, they light up and in most cases, their fears melt away,” hospital spokeswoman Krista Deans told KTVU. “And when parents see their children put at ease, it puts them at ease as well.”


The hospital started using the cars after one of their nurses started researching how she could help her pediatric patients cope with the stress of surgery. Upon investigating various techniques, she found that using the toy cars was surprisingly successful.

“It can be traumatizing for a young patient to be peeled away from their parents as they head into surgery,” added Deans. “[But] this truly helps everyone involved.”

(WATCH the cars in action below)

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