Music Therapy is "the planned and creative use of music to
attain and maintain health and well being. People of any age or
ability may benefit from a music therapy programme regardless of
musical skill or background.
Music therapy may address physical, psychological, emotional,
cognitive and social needs of individuals within a therapeutic
relationship. It focuses on meeting therapeutic aims, which
distinguishes it from musical entertainment or music education."
(Australian Music Therapy Association Inc.).
Music therapists are registered with the Australian Music
Therapy Association. They must be proficient musicians before
undertaking one of the tertiary courses of training
accredited with the Australian Music Therapy Association. (www.austmta.org.au)
At RCH, the goals of Music Therapy are to use the
experience of music to aid the patient in attaining, maintaining,
or regaining optimum levels of functioning or adaptation in all
areas of health and development. This is achieved through a range
of face-to-face services, resourcing, and team participation.
Music therapy is a service that works as part of a wider multi
disciplinary team, intended to meet identified needs within the
child as part of the family unit. The need may be related to the
child's psychological, physical, social or developmental health and
well-being / progress within the hospital environment.
This allows us to work in a way that
accommodates each individual health journey within the scope of
what is undertaken.
Music is a familiar part of life for children in Australia. They
are exposed to recorded music on radio, television, compact discs
and mp3. Many still share in making music at kindergarten and
school. Music is a part of a child's healthy life.
The music therapist engages that healthy part of the child to
help him/her cope with the illness, disorder, disease or other
medical crisis which has caused them to be hospitalised.
Music therapy is adaptable to any child, no matter how sick,
disabled and regardless of age.
Based on the child's medical and developmental status, the music
can be employed in structured ways (songs, song-writing) to help
contain or clarify emotions and empower the child. Or it may
be just framed (improvised instrument playing) to allow a totally
free, but supported expression of emotion. In these ways the music
therapist helps to alleviate tension and anxiety and aids pain
control through distraction and/or relaxation.
Hospitalised children can control music - they can decide if
they wish to participate, what they will do, how it will be done
and when it will conclude. Such freedom of choice is not
available in many other aspects of hospitalisation.
In This Section
Telephone +61 3 9345 5522
50 Flemington Road Parkville
Victoria 3052 Australia