Shibazaki, Kagari and Marshall, Nigel (2015) Using music in dementia care. In: Live Music Now at the Royal Society of Medicine, 16th November 2016, London, UK.

This paper presents a summary of the initial findings from a research project carried out between January 2014 and November 2015. In the UK, the work was carried out in association with the Charity ‘Music in Hospitals’, whilst in Japan, the research was arranged through independent musicians with significant experience in providing music concerts in care facilities. In total, 30 concerts were included in the project which took place in a total of 6 care facilities; 3 in Japan and 3 in the UK. The research method involved a series of interviews with service users, service providers and their family members as well as both open and systematic observations of clients’ responses to musical elements. Initial results suggest that musical events can be a worthwhile and important non-pharmacological intervention in promoting wellbeing. In this paper, we argue that music can play a significant role in improving the care of the elderly and in particular those with early to mid stage dementia as well as providing significant benefits for their family members and their service providers.

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