Healthcare has received another accolade for its Arts in Healthcare Program. At the Design & Health International Academy Awards, held in Brisbane, Australia, the Univeristy of Kentucky was recognized for its stellar use of art in the patient environment.
“This is a significant accomplishment, especially in light of the fact we competed with more than 100 entries in 10 categories from around the world,” said Dr. Michael Karpf, UK executive vice president for health affairs. “The arts play an important role in our new facility given all that we know about the positive impact it has on patients, visitors, and staff. But to see our efforts recognized as internationally superior is particularly gratifying.”
This award comes on the heels of the 2012 Governor’s Award in the Arts Business Award and the 2013 Medistar Consumer First Award.
“There is a growing body of evidence that art can complement medicine in the healing process,” said Jackie Hamilton, director for UK’s Arts in Healthcare Program. “Hundreds of studies from all over the world have demonstrated that length of hospital stay, need for pain relief, and incidence of depression, among many other examples, are improved with the introduction of art into the healthcare setting.”
Hamilton also notes that UK is particularly fortunate that the community shares its commitment to the arts. “The program is funded 100 percent by private entities,” she said. “That, plus the fact that we were able to integrate art and music into a new facility, rather than retrofit it to existing space, meant the sky was the limit. It gave us the capacity to develop a multi-functional program for the enjoyment and healing of everyone who comes to the hospital — patients of course, but also their families and staff.”