Laureen Harper, wife of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, watches Neil Barron, left, and Tyler Preston play a racing game at CHEO.

Video games are often blamed for being a negative distraction for most kids, but at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, playing them is a distraction from the pain.

Neil Barron was one of the first patients at CHEO to try Microsoft’s new Kinect motion-tracking sensor for the Xbox gaming console Thursday, and thought it was really fun.

“When patients are isolated and they can’t move around much, it’s really good to get them going,” the 18-year-old said Thursday.

Microsoft announced the company will donate more than 200 Kinects to 14 children’s hospitals across Canada.

“Distraction is a great tool when you’re in pain,” said Maureen Jones, CHEO child life specialist.

“They can continue to be kids.”

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