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Cool Things

An Rx for Art

Museum prescriptions aim to improve health outcomes

Need a health boost? For patients in Montreal, art therapy might be in their treatment plan. A pilot by the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts allows each doctor in the Médecins francophones du Canada to prescribe 50 free visits to improve both physical and mental health.

“There’s more and more scientific proof that art therapy is good for your physical health,” says Dr. Hélène Boyer, vice president of Médecins francophones du Canada. “We secrete hormones when we visit a museum, and these hormones are responsible for our well-being. People tend to think this is only good for mental health issues […], but that’s not the case. It’s good for patients with diabetes, for patients in palliative care, for people with chronic illness.”

Each prescription grants museum entry for up to two adults and two children age 17 or under, making the museum visit therapeutic for the patient and caregivers or family members.

Read more about the pilot program in The Montreal Gazette.