Healthcare Consulting

Philips Scan Buddy app  

A playful guide for an MRI exam

    Preparing your child for an MRI exam


    An MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) examination can provide a wealth of information to your child’s pediatrician. Yet, when unprepared, the procedure can be a stressful experience.

    Scanbuddy video

    *To play the app, please enter the code you received from your hospital.

    Tapping into the wonderment of this new experience, the Scan Buddy app* engages your child on his/her level with an easy-to-enjoy cartoon world of Scan Buddies, so your child can undergo the MRI exam with confidence. The Scan Buddies will provide a positive distraction for your child and help them feel more in control.

    Meet your Scan Buddies. Enjoy the game!

    Philips square icon

    The Scan Buddy app*


    The Scan Buddy app is a fun mobile app that helps both you and your child become familiar with the MRI procedure in a playful way. This is where you team up with Ollie and friends. You’ll find educational videos and games that help you and your child understand the workings of the MRI scanner and the scan process itself. 


    Enjoy the game!

    Please note: The Scan Buddy app is part of the Pediatric Coaching solution and a code is provided by your healthcare provider to guide you through the upcoming examination. *To play the app, please enter the code you received from your hospital.

    Ollie and friends
    Fishes in tank

    Scan Buddy app* - Pediatric Coaching  

    Girl with scanner

    The Scan Buddy app is part of the Pediatric Coaching experience, an engaging program to help children prepare for the MRI exam, at home, with the Scan Buddy app, at the hospital, with the educational 'Kitten Scanner' and even during the MRI scan.

    *To play the app, please enter the code you received from your hospital.

    Meet your Scan Buddies

    Ollie third with pink background



    Ollie is a little 5½ year old elephant. She is sweet, playful and optimistic. She can also be a bit serious when it matters. She and her Scan Buddies are ready to join in.

    Ellie thumbnail



    Ellie is the technologist. She is an adult. Children hear her voice as narrator throughout the app and in the video. Ellie is kind, wise and very helpful.  

    What’s the app all about?

    Millei and friends thumb

    The app* consists of 4 modules to help you and your child to get familiar with the MRI journey.


    The introductory movie 

    Ollie and friends are introduced to help explain and explore. The movie gives an overview of the procedures, steps, spaces and people that your child will encounter. There is also a discussion as to why metal items are not allowed and a chance to hear the unfamiliar sounds of an MRI.

    *To play the app, please enter the code you received from your hospital.

    The game thumb

    The MRI game 


    Here, your child helps a favorite Scan Buddy with their MRI scan. First your child removes metal items from the patient. When the Scan Buddy is placed on the MRI table, your child will identify the right equipment for the scan such as earplugs, headphones, and head coil. As the table slides into the bore, your child must keep the phone or tablet still to help the buddy lie still. While your child practices lying still or holding still, they again will hear the MRI sounds.

    AR game thumb

    The Augmented Reality (AR) game

    Your child will discover the MRI scanner and walk around it in augmented reality. While this is happening, the scanner becomes see-through, and he/she discovers what it looks like when there is someone in the scanner. The exploration of the MRI machine is further encouraged with a sticker hunt. Each sticker unlocks additional educational material to further de-mystify the machine and process.

    Parent module video

    The parent information module


    The educational section of this module provides general information about MRI scans to you as a parent/caregiver, including what it is, why it is needed, and how it works. The skills section contains some exercises you can do with your child to further familiarize them with the MRI exam – in a manner that fits the developmental age of your child.

    Frequently Asked Questions 

    Questions on downloading the Scan Buddy app

    How can I download the Scan Buddy app?

    • You can download  the Scan Buddy app via the Apple Store1 for iOS2 or Google Play3 for Android3 devices, by searching for Philips Scan Buddy.
    • Please note that for Android devices your device should minimally have version 10 and for Apple devices, version 14.
    • Other operating systems (such as Windows phone) are not supported.

    What do I do with the code I received from my hospital?

    After installation of the Scan Buddy app, the app will request a 6-digit code to access the contents of the app. This is the code that was provided to you by your hospital. Please, store your code carefully, as you will need it, for example when changing the language.

    I have downloaded the Scan Buddy app, but I do not have a code, how do I get access?

    The Scan Buddy app is part of Philips Pediatric Coaching solution, offered to you by your hospital. Your hospital will be able to provide you with a 6-digit license code to access the contents of the app.

    General questions on the use of the  Scan Buddy app

    When should I start introducing the Scan Buddy app to my child?

    It is recommended to get started 2-3 days prior to the MRI appointment, to allow for sufficient playing time and to become familiar with all the learning goals.

    What will my child learn from the Scan Buddy app?

    The Scan Buddy app provides a fun and engaging way to help your child, and you as a parent or caregiver, to prepare for the exam. It provides an educational video and two interactive games that inform your child about their upcoming MRI procedure. A better understanding of the procedure may increase their confidence and reduce their anxiety with regards to their upcoming scan.

    Several learning goals are addressed in the Scan Buddy app:

    • Familiarizing your child with the MRI shape and sounds
    • Informing them about the procedure
    • Informing them not to bring metal items into the room
    • Training your child to lie still

    How will the Scan Buddy app remain engaging and interesting to play?

    • The Scan Buddy app engages children on their level with an easy-to enjoy cartoon world of Scan Buddies. These lovable characters are ready to inform, calm and comfort your child.

    • The Scan Buddy app consists of three modules. A subsequent module will be unlocked after completing one game in a module, making it more engaging and motivating to finalize each module. Also, this helps your child to learn about the MRI in an appropriate order.

    • There are different games per module that your child can play. The app includes three different scenarios in the MRI game and five different scenarios in the Augmented Reality game. Each variant represents a different scan type, with associated procedures, equipment and sound.

    General questions about the adult module

    How can I support my child in preparation for their MRI exam?

    In the Scan Buddy app there is an adult module. This adult module provides additional information about the MRI procedure. It also includes tips and additional games on how you can help your child prepare for the upcoming scan.

    Why do I need to do a calculation prior to accessing the adult module?

    Language used, and information provided in the adult module, is not adjusted to the developmental age of children. By asking for a calculation, a barrier is provided to the information.

    Also, it includes a reset function that puts the app back to default settings, which should not be hit by mistake.

    Questions on support for the Scan Buddy app

    What languages are supported by the Scan Buddy app and how can I change the language?

    The Scan Buddy app is currently available in 15 languages: Arabic, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Italian, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish and Turkish.

    You can change the language by: 

    1. Access the adult module 
    2. Complete the calculation
    3. Go to: Settings 
    4. Select: Reset settings
    5. You can now select a language of your choice. 

    Note: You need to re-enter the 6-digit code to complete installation.

    How can I unlock the MRI Game and Augmented Reality Game?

    A subsequent module can only be unlocked after the prior one has been completed. This is to allow your child to learn about the procedure in the right sequence and become familiar with the learning goals in the right order. After completing a module, the next one will be unlocked. Once a module is unlocked, you can refer back to it at any time.

    The Augmented Reality game module does not work, what can I do?

    Please take the following steps:

    Step 1) Check to see if your device is listed below to ensure your device is compatible with Augmented Reality games



    If your device is not listed, it is not compatible with AR games

    Step 2) [Apple devices only] Check to see if there was a new iOS version since you installed the app. The Augmented Reality functionality may be impaired. If that is the case: 

    2a) Remove the Scan Buddy app from your Apple device 

    2b) Turn off your Apple device, when the device completely off, turn it back on.

    2c) Go to the Apple App Store and reinstall the Philips Scan Buddy o Note: you will have to re-enter the 6-digit code

    Step 3) If the issue is not resolved, check the following items:

    3a) Is the camera blocked? (e.g., phone cover) 

    3b) Is the surface that you point your phone to flat?

    3c) Is the surface large enough to project the MRI Scanner and allow the child to walk around?

    3d) Are there some objects in your room, for the Augmented Reality module to recognize the environment?

    3e) Is there sufficient light?

    Does the Scan Buddy app require an internet connection to work?

    Internet connection is needed to download the app and at first opening of the app. After that the app can be played offline. Every time you open the app, the app will use internet connection to search for updates, but in offline mode, it will use the latest version of your app.

    Will the Scan Buddy app save personal data?

    No personal data will be collected in the Scan Buddy app.

    If your question is not on this page, please send an e-mail to for questions about the Scan Buddy app. The Pediatric Coaching support team will assist you further.

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    2. IOS is a trademark or registered trademark of Cisco in the U.S. and other countries

    3. Google, Google Play and Android are trademarks of Google LLC

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