A pilot project between the Francophone Association of Doctors in Canada (MFdC) and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA) will allow patients suffering from various mental and even physical health issues to benefit from the effects of art on health free of cost.
Doctors participating in the project will be allowed to prescribe up to 50 visits to the MMFA during treatment. Each pass will be valid for up to 2 adults and 2 minors so patients can enjoy the art therapy with their loved ones by their side.
“So far 100 doctors have enrolled to take part over the course of a year,” said Nicole Parent, head of the MFdC.
“The numbers offer proof that doctors have a sensitivity and openness to alternative approaches if you want.” Parent said. The parent went on to describe the vast benefits of art on health. Akin to what happens when we work out, the body releases some “happy hormones” like dopamine and serotonin when we experience art. The effects of these hormones can help patients with everything from chronic pain to depression, anxiety, and stress.
The purpose of the pilot program is to gather data and analyze the results. These results will help in finding even more ways to use art as a therapeutic intervention and allow for the development of a protocol for identifying patients.
"I am convinced that in the 21st century, the culture will be what physical activity was for health in the 20th century," said MMFA director Nathalie Bondil in a statement.
"Cultural experiences will benefit health and wellness, just as engaging in sports contributes to fitness," she said.
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