Image via ID 204267 © Hugo Maes | Dreamstime.com
The COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t been easy on anyone, and it shows in the form of stress. Cortisol, the hormone associated with stress, has been proven to be extremely detrimental to mental health while also linked to many other physical health problems.
So, to combat this onslaught of stress-related effects from the year-and-a-half past, doctors in Brussels are trying something new: museum visits.
Part of a trial at the Brugmann hospital lasting three months, eligible inpatient residents and patients who are suffering from ill effects of stress will be given the chance to visit up to five public museums across the city, including the Contemporary Art Center, totally free of charge.
A similar program was run in Quebec in 2018, which offered patients and their caregivers or family members a free visit to the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts as part of its Art and Health Committee.
The Guardian reports that the Canadian scheme allows doctors to prescribe up to 50 museum visits per year to their patients.
Delphine Houba, the alderman in charge of culture in Brussels, cited this study as an inspiration to implement the program in the city. She tells Belgian newspaper L’Echo that the health crisis, which bleeds into the areas of stress and burnout, has “confirmed” the project’s relevance.
Art is beneficial for both physical and mental health, she states, and is set out to prove that.
Apart from the Contemporary Art Center, museums such as Fashion and Lace on Rue de la Violette, the Sewer museum, and Manneken-Pis’ Wardrobe are taking part in the initiative. Houba has said that she hopes other private museums and art collections will open their doors to similar programs in the future, too.
Next year, results from this trial program will be published, according to Artnet News. These findings should paint a clearer picture of the benefits art can have on our health.[via Artnet, image via ID 204267 © Hugo Maes | Dreamstime.com] http://www.designtaxi.com/news/415627/Museums-The-New-Treatment-Prescribed-By-Doctors-For-Stress-Related-Ailments/