Archive for the ‘Alzheimers’ Category

WHY FRANK SINATRA SHOULD BE PART OF YOUR HEALTH CARE PLAN

October 17, 2012


sinatra 

As a professional speaker that has played piano since the earth was cooling, I’m constantly amazed at the power of music and how it transforms people and events.

I was speaking to a group of healthcare professionals at their annual conference and told the story of when I was hired to perform a 60 minute musical program for Alzheimers patientsand their care givers. The audience age ranged from 40 to 75 years old.          

Hamburg Steinway D-274

Hamburg Steinway D-274 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Some patients were in the advanced stages of the disease and couldn’t remember their own name. Caregivers were stressed out and close to compassionate fatigue. The energy in the room was heavy and somewhat sad. Within seconds of playing ‘New York, New York‘ it happened…

Blank stares became bright eyes. Droopy heads lifted up. Toes tapped and hands clapped in tempo. Patients with no memory sang along perfectly to the music. Worn out care givers became energized and animated. Suddenly the atmosphere was alive and vibrant.

And the best part? No pills needed.

As the kickoff speaker for that healthcare conference, and since I’m kinda funny and play piano during my presentations on workplace performance, the precedent was set for the whole event. Attendees left feeling happy.

Can you put a price on happy? Do you have a prescription for happy? If you’re a healthcare professional how do you define happy?

I’d be happy to hear your thoughts.

Doo-bee-doo-bee-doo…

The Unpopular Prescription for Good Health

September 6, 2012

As a frequent professional speaker and entertainer for healthcare events in Houston and around the country, I’m constantly amazed at how playing live music transforms people on the spot…

Today I delivered a 45 minute musical program for an Alzheimers group with ages ranging from 55 – 94 years old. Some shuffled in with walkers, others were wheeled in by care givers, while some walked slowly without assistance. They sat expectantly with blank stares looking straight ahead.

Within minutes of playing an empassioned version of  The Impossible Dream, I felt the energy in the room shift to a new level of alive.  After their enthusiastic applause, they sang along to Hello Dolly, shouted answers to musical trivia questions, clapped in tempo to Glen Miller’s In The Mood and ended up dancing to New York New York.  The mood contrast from beginning to end was like day and night!

The miracle is that some of these people can’t remember their own name, yet they knew every word to songs written 50 years ago. For 45 minutes this seniors group came alive with the vibrancy of their youth. Their eyes shone, their toes tapped and their smiles radiated complete well being.

No drugs. No worries.

What if doctors prescribed musical activities versus mind altering drugs for the vulnerable aging population ? What if the healthcare industry embraced alternative action to pharmeceuticals? Oh wait. That wouldn’t be FDA approved.  Silly me.

If you’re the Baby Boomer caregiver of an aging parent, consider an inexpensive way to put a smile on their face and a twinkle in their eye…

Music –  it’s what the doctor SHOULD have ordered.

View this video to see how you can help someone you love:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NKDXuCE7LeQ&feature=share