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Music as a Global Resource: - International Council for Caring ...

Music as a Global Resource: - International Council for Caring ...

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SECTION: Music for Mental and Physical Health COUNTRY: United States of America PROJECT: MUSIC THERAPY IN CANCER CARE: MEMORIAL SLOAN-KETTERING CANCER CENTER DESCRIPTION: Since its founding in 1884, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSK) in New York City has played a leadership role in defining the standard of care for patients with cancer. MSK‟s mission is the progressive control and cure of cancer through programs of research, patient care, and education. MSK is the oldest and largest private institution for cancer care in the world: MKS includes a 470-bed hospital and a full range of outpatient services. Although music therapy has been a service at MSK since the 1970‟s, the current music therapy program of the Integrative Medicine Service (IMS) was established in 2000 and has maintained a continually active presence since that time. The IMS has proven itself an essential part of MSK‟s commitment to treating the patient as a whole, offering a wide variety of data-backed, research driven integrative and complementary therapies. IMS is an internationally-known model program accommodating over 20,000 visits from patients and family members each year. Music therapists offer approximately 2400 individual inpatient sessions per year, in addition to group sessions. Available to all patients of all ages, the music therapy program, addresses physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual needs in order to enhance the quality of life for both patients and families. Specific goals are to help ease fear and anxiety, to enhance creative expression, to help manage symptoms and to promote relaxation and comfort. Music therapists use the elements of music: rhythm, melody, tone, harmony, etc. through song and music making as well as music relaxation and listening. The program uses a variety of instruments, including guitar, keyboard, harp, and percussion. Other aspects of the music therapy program include: Bedside visits and a unique music and dance group for pediatric patients are held each week in the Claire Tow Pediatric Day Hospital. The group draws upon each participant‟s personal creativity and expressivity to promote physical health and ease psychological fears as children and their families await outpatient appointments. This approach assists young children in adjusting to and coping with their diagnoses. Group sessions for adult patients and their visitors are offered weekly in cooperation with the Adult Recreation program. Here, patients and family members have an opportunity to join a drum circle, sing-along or participate in musical meditation sessions. Supportive patient-to-patient communication via musical expression and verbal means is a natural component of these groups. Environmental music therapy is provided in various areas within the hospital, such as the Post Anesthesia Care Unit as well as the Pre-Surgical Unit, as a powerful way to influence the hospital environment as patients cope with stressors surrounding surgery and recovery. Sessions are held for patients who are in isolation for extended periods of time, such as those in the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit. Isolated patients report that music therapy helps to reduce the tension, pain, and feelings of sadness that can accompany isolation before a serious procedure. Comfort care is provided for patients at the end of life and their families. Comments and letters from staff and family members attest to the effectiveness of this intervention at a time when it can be most difficult to attain a sense of peace and calm. 96

CURRENT STATUS: In addition to clinical services, music therapists train and supervise students from affiliated graduate programs providing valuable clinical fieldwork and internship opportunities. Clinical observers from medical schools and an international network of hospitals spend time learning from therapists. Music therapists provide in-services to staff and take a leadership role in offering staff bereavement sessions. The Music Therapy Program is supported by MSKCC through an endowment for Integrative Medicine from the Laurence S. Rockefeller Foundation. Importantly, the Gabrielle‟s Angel Foundation for Cancer Research provides significant external philanthropic support. RESEARCH AND EVALUATION: As part of the Department of Medicine‟s service-specific evaluations, the Integrative Medicine Service (home of the Music Therapy Program) presents its progress in clinical, research, and educational efforts to the entire leadership group on a regular basis. The IMS‟s research indicating that music therapy significantly enhances mood among patients awaiting bone marrow transplantation was published in the journal Cancer in 2003. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: http://www.mskcc.org/mskcc/html/1979.cfm http://www.mskcc.org/mskcc/html/94297.cfm - Music as An Integrative Approach to Healing Publications: Cassileth, B.R., Vickers, A.J. & Magill, L.A. (2003) Music therapy for mood disturbance during hospitalization for autologous stem cell transplantation: a randomized controlled trial. Cancer. 98(12): 2723-9. Magill, L. (2001) The use of music therapy to address the suffering in advanced cancer pain. Journal of Palliative Care. 17(3), 167-72. Magill, L. (2006) Role of music therapy in integrative oncology. Journal of the Society for Integrative Oncology. 4(2), 79-81. Popkin, K., Levin, T., Lichtenthal, W., Redl, N., Rothstein, H., Siegel, D., Coyle, N. (2011) A pilot music therapy-centered grief intervention for nurses and ancillary staff working in cancer setting. Music and Medicine, 3 (1), 40-46. In the Press: Newman, A., Ringer, C., Spense, S. (2010) Reclaim Your Life. Your Health Monthly, October, 2- 3. Bond, V. (2009) Health: Portrait of an Artist. Welltone New Music Newsletter, 3, December. CONTACT INFORMATION: Organization: Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center Address: Music Therapy Program, Integrative Medicine Service, 1429 First Avenue, New York, NY 10021 Phone: (212) 639-6119 Contact Person: Karen Popkin, LCAT, MT-BC Email: popkink@mskcc.org 97

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