In the Loop
General News : Jul 31, 2015

UF’s Center for Arts in Medicine awarded National Endowment for the Arts grant

Every year, more than 130 million patients access emergency care in the United States. Now, with the help of a $25,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) to the University of Florida’s (UF) Center for Arts in Medicine, the experience may become a bit less stressful. The award will fund the music program in the UF Health Shands Emergency Department and Trauma Center, bringing soothing notes and melodies to those seeking and providing care.

“It is truly a privilege to have this collaboration with UF's Center for Arts in Medicine,” said J. Adrian Tyndall, M.D., M.P.H., chief of emergency services at UF Health Shands Hospital. “Live preferential music performance in emergency department settings is indeed innovative and I am excited to see how this program progresses.”

The center, in partnership with the Department of Emergency Medicine, developed its music program to help enhance patient care at UF Health by reducing stress and to help reduce the cost of care in emergency and trauma medicine.

“The implementation of our music program in its pilot phase over the past year yielded overwhelmingly positive feedback from patients, family members, staff and musicians, and has provided us with a clear framework for the safe and effective performance of music in an emergency department,” said Jill Sonke, director of UF’s Center for Arts in Medicine.

The project has the potential to demonstrate that the arts, and music in particular, can affect significant improvements in emergency medicine, and health care in general. Replication of music programs in health care institutions nationwide could reduce costs, risks, and suffering, spur more creative approaches to problem solving, and help industry leaders to see that the arts are integral to health care.

“The NEA is committed to advancing learning, fueling creativity, and celebrating the arts in cities and towns across the United States,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “Funding these new projects like the one in UF’s Center for Arts in Medicine represents an investment in both local communities and our nation’s creative vitality.”

Through awards to nonprofits each year, the NEA promotes opportunities for people in communities across America to experience the arts and exercise their creativity. This round of NEA funding totaled $74.3 million nationwide.

To learn more about this and other UF Center for Arts in Medicine research projects, visit To join the conversation online about recent NEA grant recipients, use #NEASpring2015. For more information on projects included in the most recent NEA grant announcement, go to