Repeat Prescription: G4S FM continues support for ‘Ex Cathedra’s Singing Medicine’ at Birmingham Heartlands Hospital
Having initially enjoyed success at Birmingham Children’s Hospital, ‘Singing Medicine®’ was introduced to Birmingham Heartlands in 2011, with funding provided by G4S FM as part of their wider facilities management contract at the hospital. The project involves ‘singing play’ where young inpatients are invited to join in with activities devised by Ex Cathedra’s vocal tutors. The sessions provide a welcome change of fun and relaxation for those who have been treated in the Accident and Emergency Paediatrics Unit and other Paediatric wards within Heartlands.
Over the last five years, more than 2,000 young patients and their parents have taken part in the project, providing a morale boosting distraction which often aids the recovery process. General wellbeing is encouraged through deeper breathing, stimulation of the brain and release of oxytocin associated with the act of singing. All children are offered the chance to participate, whatever their capability or individual needs.
The project has enjoyed demonstrable success says Christine Morrell, Health Play Specialist at Heartlands Hospital: “I have been more than happy with the project and feel that Singing Medicine is part of the ward family. There have been many occasions when the girls have sung lullabies to distressed children, which I has brought tears to my eyes several times. They are all so talented and put smiles on many faces.”
Rebecca Ledgard, Director of Education, Ex Cathedra added: “We are absolutely delighted that G4S is continuing to support Singing Medicine at Heartlands for the sixth consecutive year. We have always been warmly welcomed by staff, and it is so rewarding to help poorly childen benefit from singing play. Singing is a very special activity with some great well being benefits.”
Lesley Reid, G4S FM contract manager at Birmingham Heartlands, added: “Sponsoring this fantastic project is a source of great pride for all of us at G4S FM. I am so pleased this wonderful initiative is set to continue as it brings welcome change in what can be a difficult time for patients and families.”