LOCKPORT, NY- Smartphone apps are great tools to make life a little easier. Now, one Lockport father developed an app to help care for his sick child, and families around the world are starting to use it, too.
4-month-old Mason brings endless amounts of joy to his parent, Jason and Meaghan Phipps. But every day when it's time for physical therapy life can get a little complicated.
Mason was born with Cystic Fibrosis. It's an inherited disease that causes sticky mucus to collect in the lungs and digestive tract. It can be life threatening.
"Right now there is no cure so it is going to be a lifelong battle for him," said Meaghan.
Daily care for little Mason includes medications, vitamins, and chest physical therapy for 30 minutes a day. They tap his chest and back in ten different positions for 3 minutes each.
"I try to do it when he's sleeping but sometimes he's awake and he's fidgety and he's crying. You kind of have to stop for a minute and get him settled in," said Meaghan.
Jason checked out several Cystic Fibrosis apps to help in the process, but he felt they were too complicated. So he decided to develop one for himself and called it "Chest PT."
It allows the user to set the number of positions, minutes per position, and alert sounds- from soothing noises to animal sounds.
Since it's been available for iPhones and iPads more than 100 people around the world, from Japan to Australia to the UK, have downloaded the app and Jason isn't charging a penny.
"Everyone with CF, we're kind of a community. We like to stick together, so I thought it made sense to offer it for free," said Jason.
Jason says the app will be available for Android devices within the next month or two. For iPhones and iPads, just type "Chest PT" into the iTunes store to download the app.