Art of Medicine Shows the Healing Power of the Arts

An event to showcase how the arts can be used to enhance patient care and well-being will be held on Monday in Sydney.

The Art of Medicine takes place on Monday, May 29 at St. Theresa’s Parish Centre in Sydney. It runs from 7-9 p.m. and is organized by the Cape Breton Cancer Centre.

“The Cancer Centre has undertaken a number of projects that use the arts-visual, musical, literary and horticultural-to help our patients contend with their illness and to help others better understand the lived experience of being ill,” says Tom McNeil, Medical Social Worker with the Cancer Centre. “The Art of Medicine is an opportunity to showcase some of what has been going on.”

This year, the Art of Medicine will again highlight the work of Write On! , a creative writing group which consists of Paul MacDougall and cancer patients.

Another project being highlighted is Shelly Allen’s music therapy group. The group will perform rearrangements of popular songs. Also featured is the photography of Paula Graham, a participant in last year’s Art of Living program.

“We hope people will come away from the Art of Medicine more attentive to the patient’s voice as we try to understand the illness experience,” says McNeil. “The arts can encourage that voice. We just have to listen.”

McNeil adds that the event wouldn’t be possible without the support of the Cape Breton Regional Hospital Foundation, the Cancer Centre, volunteers, Paul MacDougall, Shelly Allen and most importantly, the patients who share their stories through art.

Art of Medicine is free, with a goodwill offering at the door. Seating is limited so register early. To register, contact 902-567-8074.


Media Contact:
Tom McNeil, Medical Social Worker