Arts in Healthcare
There are two main kinds of arts in healthcare experiences:
- • passive - the art is provided for the pleasure, relief and entertainment of the audience.
(eg: live music in a public space, specific art in the walls, tile work on the floors)
- • interactive - art is created by the patient/visitor/staff often led by a professional artist
(eg: making a piece of art, selecting art for the walls of the room, sharing the artistic side of yourself with the community in which you work and/or come for treatment.)
WHAT I OFFER
Fees are dependant on the specific need and range from Hourly to Project rates.
It is important to note that the art is not provided as therapy in these programs. Art Therapy, Music Therapy, Dance Therapy are valid uses for the arts in a healthcare setting but are not the purpose of these programs.
In this case the arts are made available simply for the sake of creating and sharing art and not to effect change. That one of the outcomes may be better health and a sense of positive wellbeing is a byproduct of the experience of art not the purpose of the art. In short, it is not an intervention but a personal experience.
In a medical facility 3 groups benefit
opportunity for healthy emotional expression
some element of control in the environment
greater sense of self worth/wellbeing
improved communication/interactions with staff and visitors.
(studies indicate that the above substantially increases rate of recovery and is some cases directly affects healing.)
OUT-PATIENT (in waiting rooms etc)
• Visitors/the Community
experience the hospital in a more positive light
provides a means by which to communicate/spend time more easily with patients & staff
creative visible opportunity to recognize donors and other supporters
stress relief and self care
improved communication skills (with patients and with other staff)
improved environment in which to work
greater sense of wellbeing and self worth
increased staff retention
Examples of Arts in Healthcare Programs:
• Arts At The Bedside
simple, safe and effective craft projects that result in the patient creating something beautiful and meaningful that they can display in their room, take home, or give to a visitor or staff member.
• Art Cart
a small mobile collection of arts materials that stores easily and can travel into rooms/clinics whether with a facilitating artists, or to be available for families and friends, staff and patients to use.
• In Room Art Gallery
wall-sized visual art in reproduction is available for patients to select to hang in their room during their stay. This can involve working with local galleries and artists who make prints available to the hospital for that purpose
• Staff Arts Shows open to the public
the staff is invited to submit works of art ( pottery, painting, collage, fabric art) that are displayed in a public space, much as an art gallery. There can be a ‘formal opening’ with wine and cheese and the art remains on display for a month. This can be repeated throughout the year.
(also, Professional Artists in the community could be invited to mount an exhibition in the hospital.)
• Performances in a Public Space
Mobile Patients, staff and the general community attend.
(eg a Musical Quartet plays, a poetry or play reading, a dance recital.)
• Stress Busters
a table available in staff rooms for staff to use simple arts materials whenever they feel the need.(materials can include: clay, bookmark making, writing, painting.)
An artist maybe available at specific times to lead someone through an arts process.
• Retreat Days
Certainly for nurses and why not for doctors, technicians and administrative staff? a day per year, paid for by the hospital that is truly about retreat and renewal. Nothing educational and not on the staff’s own time but a paid work day. (This is based on a highly successful program in Gainsville, Florida that has demonstrably increased nurse job satisfaction and retention rates.)
Medical Professionals Training/Support
From medical school training program that include the arts in the curriculum, to Continuing Education credits, to support programs within the hospital or community, the are valuable tool by which to enhance the skills and wellbeing of the medical professional. This is equally applicable to doctors, nurses administrators and others who work in the medical field.