Staff and contributors at the recent arts seminar at Tullamore Hospital
Midland Regional Hospital Tullamore (MRHT) recently held an arts and health seminar that was opened by hospital manager Orlagh Claffey. The seminar had over 10 sessions that included panel discussions and showcases for audience members.
The seminar was organised by Ann Lawlor and Anam Beo (Co. Offaly's arts, health and wellbeing programme). The Seminar was supported by Offaly County Council and MRHT. The purpose of it was to enable the exploration of the role of arts within medical, health and care settings via a range of strands of interest.
The spectrum of engagement between arts and health is vast and all seminar contributors were invited to bring their particular expertise, practice and unique experiences to create a substantial conversation that can contribute to and enquire into the possibilities of what constitutes arts and health.
Among the highlights of the seminar were Carol Bergin, who shared her personal account of Music Thanatology at the end stages of care for her mother. She provided examples of how harp playing and voice can serve the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the patient and their loved ones.
Opening the seminar hospital manager Orlagh Claffey said: “Today’s seminar is a positive day for Midland Regional Hospital Tullamore. It is vitally important that our patients, staff and visitors look after their health and wellbeing. The arts are an ideal way to improve our mindfulness that plays crucial role in overall health.”
Ms Claffey went on to commend the organisers of the seminar who she said “had put in an enormous amount of time and effort to deliver today’s arts and health seminar.”
Curator of the event Ann Lawlor said: “We were delighted with the seminar and we would like to thank the staff and management of Midland Regional Hospital Tullamore for hosting it. We are extremely grateful for the contributors for participating in the seminar that was well attended by hospital staff, other HSE staff from nursing homes and community care, arts and health professionals and people interested in arts and culture. We hope that this starts the conversation between the links of arts and health wellbeing.”
Concluding Ms Lawlor said, “We are continuing to work with MRHT and in the coming months we will launch a visual arts exhibition with artists, Rowena Keaveny and Julie Spollen from Anam Beo. The exhibition will be the culmination of meeting and collaborating with a wide range of staff across the hospital in 2017."
Attending the seminar Helen Stokes, Dublin Midland Hospital Group (DMHG) General Manager said: “We very much welcome the hosting of an arts and health seminar at Midland Regional Hospital Tullamore. This event fits very well with our Healthy Ireland Initiative that is being implemented across our seven hospitals in the DMHG and we are actively encouraging our patients and staff to participate in it. We want to commend the curator and MRHT hospital for organising this very valuable seminar.”
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