The bare necessities of life: Reactions to Kids’ Classics live music in a children’s hospital in Ireland

Author(s):*Listed Alphabetically
Haake A

Year of Publication:

Kids' Classics

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This report evaluates the impact of live music in a large children’s hospital in Ireland, as provided by Kids’ Classics, and focuses specifically on bedside music.
The evaluation study was initiated by the National Concert Hall and funded by the Community Foundation for Ireland.

An evaluation study was carried out during 2015 at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital Crumlin (OLCHC) in Dublin. While Kids’ Classics played in several wards at OLCHC, two units were selected as sample sites for evaluation purposes: the paediatric oncology unit (consisting of a day unit and an inpatient ward), and a paediatric cardiology ward (Children’s Heart Centre). These two sites were selected because of the variety of rooms and spaces available, including playrooms, multi-bed wards, and single rooms.

Quantitative and qualitative data was collected with consent on four occasions during 2015 (April-June). Observations, a survey, interviews, and reflective journals by musicians were used to assess the impact on paediatric patients, their family and the hospital staff. There were 81 survey respondents in total. Of these, there were 31 parents, 34 health care staff, and 16 patients.

The results show positive responses of hospitalised children. Parents reported increased well-being for their children and also for themselves, and similar patterns were found among hospital staff. Interactions with the musicians such as the child playing the instruments and hearing the music were important.
The results suggest that:
• music can create a space for children in hospital to interact and ease their (and their parents’) anxiety and stress
• such music activities can support healthcare staff in their working environment by providing entertainment, relaxation and help bringing a level of normality and everyday life into the hospital wards.

Evidence Type: Qualitative Research

Main Focus: Wellbeing / Quality of life

Research Purpose: Outcome Evaluation

Context: Hospital

Art Forms: Music

Access Type: Free Download

APA Citation:

Haake, A. (2015). The bare necessities of life: Reactions to Kids’ Classics live music in a children’s hospital in Ireland. Dunboyne: Kids’ Classics.