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October 2021

Arts, health and wellbeing: a third way for health?

Journal/Book: World Hosp Health Serv. 1999; 35: 3-6.

Abstract: The principle of a Third Way is to balance the autonomous needs of the individual with the need for community. Elevating Arts into a pivotal role across the spectrum of healthcare may provide a third way. Ill health is not isolated from society. A holistic approach sees health as successful adaptation to environment; Unemployment, social exclusion and bereavement become as much health concerns as diabetes. The health perspective should widen from the narrow scientific to a broader humanistic approach: changing professional medical education; introducing arts in healthcare settings and understanding the community impact of participation in the arts. Harnessing disparate perspectives present a challenge. Professional medical education should change to bridge the gap between science and society. Evidence suggests that the healthcare settings that support and reflect the perspectives offered by Dance, Music, Literature, Museums and Galleries lead to health gain and are in the long term cost-effective. Over the last decade a number of studies and grassroots projects have demonstrated the therapeutic value of arts in treating and preventing illness, yet there is a need to fully exploit this potential; health planners should provide leadership and support. The potential for arts to inform and facilitate individual expression is enourmous and should be further explored. A third way for health requires fundamental reassessment: what is health? What is a health centre: Arts should provide a third way to a dynamic engagement between the NHS and its constituents.

Note: Using Smart Source Parsing

Keyword(s): Art. Community Health Planning. Great Britain. Holistic Health. Human. Humanism. Social Conditions. Social Environment. State Medicine

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