Patients with Parkinson’s disease and other chronic illnesses are benefiting greatly from the St John of God Frankston Rehabilitation Hospital’s Music for Wellness program.
The program began in 2016 following a pilot project conducted in collaboration with theUniversity of Western Australia andMusica Viva, which presented overwhelming results showing happiness in patients post engagement in music.
Speech Pathologist Senior Clinician and Music for Wellness Coordinator Jenny Shurdington said the program could improve physical, communication, and emotional skills of individuals living with Parkinson’s disease, as well as those with respiratory issues, chronic pain and other debilitating illnesses.
“Participating in the program helps boost confidence levels, transforms attitudes about living with a chronic illness, and helps manage some of the symptoms associated with their condition,” Jenny said.
Weekly singing and song writing workshops are conducted with Musician in Residence, Colleen Rees, as a way to holistically improve patient care.
“The program provides a social environment for participants to interact with other people who are going through similar experiences, and to share a positive, stimulating activity together,” Colleen said.
Parkinson’s patient Nola Delaney was recommended to try the program by her neurologist and has loved attending the weekly sessions.
“What I like about Music for Wellness is the happiness of it all. Everybody’s happy and enjoying it, it makes you feel good,” Nola said.
St John of God Frankston Rehabilitation Hospital, in collaboration with Dr Christina Davies of the University of WA, will continue research evaluating the impact of our Music for Wellness program on patient pain reduction and wellbeing in 2018.
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