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News Article

Levine Children's Hospital Patients Lend Their Voices to Otis Elevators

February 21, 2017

LCH patients and families during the commemorative ribbon cutting.
Otis Charlotte Team (L to R): Randy Waters, general manager; Kristin Maddox, service sales trainee; Will Huffman, branch sales manager; Paige McCoy, account manager; Stephen Virta, Sr., account manager; Bill Colin, CHS director of Plant Operations; Chris Connors, account manager; Kristina Hurd, account manager; and Joe Delaney, modernization superintendent.
Patients of LCH recorded their voices inside the Hospital at Seacrest Studio, which incorporates creative arts into the pediatric healing process.
LCH patients get behind the controls as they record their voices in Seacrest Studios.

Press a floor button in most “talking” elevators and you get an efficient response from an adult voice. However, as a result of a contest involving pediatric patients at the Carolinas Healthcare System Levine Children’s Hospital (LCH) in Charlotte, North Carolina, the elevators now provide more personal responses.

After a custom-speech upgrade by Otis’ Charlotte office, pressing a button in any one of four elevators that travel to the hospital’s 12 floors results in a voice response from a hospital patient announcing the floor and other directions to passengers. Whether the announcement is “Second Floor Family Resource Center and Temple” or “Please Stand Clear of the Closing Door,” each message was recorded by an LCH patient between the ages of 4 and 17. The range of ages makes for heart-warming and endearing contributions by some of the younger patients, as well as quite professional and refined responses by the older children.

The project, which involved Otis and hospital employees, came about in an attempt to create a fun activity for the children of LCH. The team developed a coloring contest in which patients would imagine and create an elevator interior of the future. Winners were selected to record their voices for the elevator announcements right at the hospital in The Ryan Seacrest Foundation’s Seacrest Studios. The foundation has established studios in ten pediatric hospitals around the country for patients to explore the creative realms of radio, television and news media to aid in the healing process for children and their families.

Otis Charlotte employees, hospital staff, parents, patients and family members attended an unveiling of the custom voice announcement project on Jan. 11. Costs of the upgrades were covered by Otis.

“The Otis Charlotte team was honored to have the opportunity to partner with our customer to turn an idea into a reality at Levine Children’s Hospital,” said Stephen Virta, senior account manager. “This opportunity allowed our team to be involved in something fun and creative that not only benefited the customer and their patients, but allowed for an opportunity to give back to the community. The children had a great time taking part in the contest, as well as making the recordings in the Seacrest Studio. We’re proud of the result and hard work from all partners.”

The Levine Children’s Hospital, the largest children’s hospital between Atlanta, Georgia, and Washington, D.C., has been named a best children’s hospital in multiple specialties by U.S. News & World Report.