New Seacrest Studios at Primary Children’s Hospital aims to connect patients
SALT LAKE CITY — Ryan Seacrest, best known as the host of “American Idol,” paid a visit to Intermountain Primary Children’s Hospital on Tuesday to celebrate the grand opening of the new Seacrest Studio.
The new state-of-the-art broadcast studio, located in the lobby of the hospital, gives patients at the hospital the opportunity to host segments and participate in call-in programs with other patients in the hospital using a closed-circuit TV system. They will also be able to show off their own talents.
The Ryan Seacrest Foundation has established studios at 13 other hospitals around the country. The goal of the nonprofit foundation is to inspire youth through entertainment and education focused initiatives by building broadcast media centers within pediatric hospitals for its patients to explore the creative realms of radio, TV and other types of media.
“We are thrilled to welcome Primary Children’s Hospital to the RSF family as we open the 14th Seacrest Studio at children’s hospitals nationwide and the third one this year,” Seacrest said during the event, where patient Payson Inkley, who was treated for leukemia, had the honor of cutting the ribbon. “It’s incredibly rewarding to know that more kids will have access to the wonders of media during their stay and I look forward to seeing how they use these new skills in the years to come.”
Seacrest is the chairman and founder of the Ryan Seacrest Foundation and runs it with his parents, Constance Marie Zullinger and Gary Lee Seacrest, and sister, Meredith Seacrest Leach. During the opening celebration, he sat down and talked with several current and former patients at the hospital and took time to have his picture taken with some of his youngest fans.
On his Instagram page, a video showed Seacrest walking into the hospital and saying, “This is one of the biggest and brightest we’ve ever built.” He said not only will patients be able to communicate with other patients at the hospital, they’ll also be able to talk with other patients across the country.
He also brought along “Top Gun: Maverick” and “Fantastic Four” star Miles Teller, singer/songwriter Andy Grammer, and actor/director/producer Zachary Levi.
“A hospital can be a scary and unfamiliar place for kids receiving care, but having an area where they can connect with others while healing is vital to a child’s well-being,” said Katy Welkie, CEO of Intermountain Primary Children’s Hospital. “We’re thrilled to have Seacrest Studios be a part of our future of care.”
According to the Journal of Pediatric Nursing, expressive therapies for hospitalized children showed the young patients were calmer following therapy as well as during the remainder of their hospital stay. The Seacrest Studio aims to provide healing and comfort in these children.
Seacrest, who wears many hats in the entertainment industry, including accepting the role as host of the game show “Wheel of Fortune” next year, said there wouldn’t be any point in what he’s doing if he couldn’t give back and help others find happiness in their lives.