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Arts in Healthcare is a diverse, multidisciplinary field dedicated to transforming the healthcare experience by connecting people with the power of the arts at key moments in their lives. This Green Paper, submitted by the Society for the Arts in Healthcare, discusses the successes and future of this rapidly growing field that integrates the arts, including literary, performing, and visual arts and design, into a wide variety of healthcare and community settings for therapeutic, educational, and expressive purposes.

Green Paper Authoring Organization: Society for the Arts in Healthcare


Alie Wickham
Program Assistance
Center for the Arts in Healthcare Research and Education (CAHRE)
Gainesville, FL

Alie Wickham became involved with the arts in healthcare field during her summer 2008 internship with the Shands Arts in Medicine program and the Center for the Arts in Healthcare Research and Education (CAHRE) at the University of Florida. Following her internship, during her final year at Hampshire College, she initiated two arts in healthcare programs in two health facilities and focused her undergraduate thesis on the interactions between hospital patients and artists in residence. After graduating from Hampshire with a BA and an emphasis on biomedicine and dance education, she moved to Gainesville, Florida, where she currently serves as Program Assistant for Shands and Certificate Program Coordinator for CAHRE.  Alie is also an active member of the Membership, Awards, and Building Task Force committees for the Society for the Arts in Healthcare and was featured in the Society’s first Student Quarterly View in fall 2009.








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Alie Wickham

It’s been awhile since a post has gone up.  I apologize for that, however, this delay in posting is not just from my lack of time, but also from my lack of motivation to continue these posts.  I am going to be frank and honest with all of you: These Green Paper posts can ONLY make a difference with EVERYONE’S help!! This means you! I could suggest improvements, and attempt to facilitate discussions as much as I want – I love talking about the arts in healthcare, it’s my passion! However, how are we supposed to grow and be innovative thinkers as a field without the input of all of you? Ladies and gentlemen, artists and healthcare providers, students and professionals, it is now your time to step up…do you want me to keep writing and suggesting topics of discussion? PLEASE RESPOND! Thank you!

Now for the post…

The following statement comes from the “Moving Forward” section of the Arts in Healthcare Green Paper:

Arts in healthcare is steadily moving forward. Increasingly, healthcare administrators are not only welcoming but also financially supporting arts programming in their institutions. Medical and nursing schools see the value in incorporating arts in healthcare courses or content to help their students develop essential skills such as observation and communication. Arts institutions, schools, and colleges are partnering with healthcare organizations to provide arts programming and health promotion experiences in community settings. Read the rest of this entry »

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Alie Wickham

Well, our cycle for the PepsiRefresh grant has come to an end.  We ended at an excellent ranking of 117 – seriously folks; I’m not trying to be sarcastic.  Considering the hundreds of incredible ideas and passionate organizations (and individuals) we were up against, we should be proud.

However, this did get me thinking (and perfect timing considering I needed to get another post up)…

What would you do with a PepsiRefresh Grant???

I mean it! If you were given the opportunity to write a PepsiRefresh Grant ($5,000 to $250,000), what would you write the grant for and how would you design whatever project or mission you were trying to get funded? However, here is the challenge:

In the spirit of looking to the future, and the resourceful Green Paper given to us to work from, how would you use the challenges posted in the paper or via the arts in healthcare listserv (hospital advocacy, funding, certificates and degrees, research, etc.) to develop the “perfect” future of an arts in healthcare project, program or intervention/resolution to one of the challenges listed above?

I challenge you to sincerely think about this – are you up for it???  Let’s hear your voice!!

Here’s the second half of an interview between Alie Wickham and Mike Gagliardo, the ambassadors for the two green paper topics: Arts in Healthcare and Strings. Alie and Mike discuss how the green papers have approached a vision of the future.

The first half of their interview can be found here.

Check out this first part of an interview between Alie Wickham and Mike Gagliardo, the ambassadors for the two green paper topics: Arts in Healthcare and Strings. Alie and Mike discuss arts advocacy as it relates to the arts and also touch on the state of the economy and healthcare reform.  In next week’s conclusion of the interview, they will discuss how the green papers have approached a vision of the future.

Alie Wickham

Hey Bloggers!!

Alright – the field of Arts in Healthcare needs your help!! Here is the deal:

The Society for the Arts in Healthcare (the international “umbrella” organization for our field) is in the running for a $25,000 Pepsi Refresh grant – which is AWESOME!! However, we (meaning the Society) cannot get this grant alone.  We need EVERYONE’S help. The best part is that getting involved is simple – all you have to do is VOTE! So, how do you do this?? Simply follow the directions at http://www.refresheverything.com/artsinhealthcare – and….VOTE!!!!

Now I am sure you are wondering what this grant is for, right?

Artist Registry: How would you rather spend your time in a hospital—anxiously staring at drab walls or calming your nerves with vibrant art and creative activities? The answer is obvious, especially for our members who know the healing power of art. The Society’s new artist registry will connect hospitals with artists to enhance the patient experience, while supporting artist employment and promotion.

Simply – this grant will bring art into the healthcare environment and provide artists with more job opportunities.  What could be better than that?? Actually getting the grant to do it! So, VOTE VOTE VOTE – EVERYDAY!!!!

Thanks everyone – happy creating!!!

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Alie Wickham

It has been awhile since I posted, much longer than I had expected, and I have a couple of thoughts in regards to this unexpected break that I have taken:

  1. I’m hoping that since I’ve last posted something, some of you have taken the time to process previous posts, and are hopefully ready to shout out what you have been wanting to say since the last time I posted a discussion topic.
  2. WHY HAS NO ONE SAID ANYTHING IN THE LAST MONTH?? I realize I am partially to blame for this, but, I am going to agree with another fellow Amabassador of mine – Mike Gagliardo, Strings…. We cannot do this alone!!

I believe another Ambassador (Jennifer Armstrong, Leadership) used this as an example of why us Ambassadors cannot do this alone:  As leaders, we reach for the sky.  However, at some point or another, our arms are going to get tired.  We will either a) become to exhausted and burned out to move on, or b) look from one side to the next hoping to find someone who is willing to stick by us and raise their arms up as well.

So, I ask the simple question….Is ANYONE out there who is willing to make some noise about the future of this field and reach for the sky, too?? Furthermore, if you are out there, where are you? How can we find you or find others who are interested in sharing their thoughts about the future of this field? There is a future, but unless we start thinking about how we are going to shape it now, the future will soon become the present, and our ideas and discussion about the future will not have the opportunity to happen; they will simply have to take place and hope everything goes as we imagined it would.  However, if we talk about it now, couldn’t we make our imagine a little more concrete?

PLEASE – say something, and let us (the Ambassadors) know you are there.  We want to hear from you, we HAVE to hear from you – YOU, the future and present life of this field!!! So speak up and share your voice…trust me, I’m sure my voice will start to get on some of your nerves, eventually.  I would prefer to avoid this. :)

What do you want to be the next discussion topic?

First of all, I want to take this time to remind everyone to please pass the word along of how important it is to continue the discussion about the future of the arts in healthcare.  This is an opportunity for us to potential shape the outcome of our field into its most ideal format.  So, please, don’t miss the chance to make an impact! Thank you to those who have already posted, and I hope that those who have not will start now!

Now, for the discussion topic of the week.  Continuing the theme from my previous post – looking at the importance of our current and future leaders being able to recognize how to equally relate the arts (and artists) with the healthcare (and healthcare providers) – I found a sentence from the Green Paper that I thought a discussion could build from: Read the rest of this entry »

In response to “Leadership is a Verb – so Act on it!”, Karin writes, “We need to remember that these industries need liaisons who are empathetic and understanding of both sides of the coin and can speak to both communities.”

Now, I believe I know which two communities Karin is referring to.  However, Karin, if you read this and I am incorrect, please feel free to let me know.  The two communities that come to my mind from this response are:

1) Arts   2) Healthcare

It is true – the leaders of our field must understand both sides, equally, and have similar empathy for each of them.  The arts in healthcare are most impacting when they work as a compliment for one another. Just like in arts in education – they are most impacting when the artists understand what the educators need, and vice versa. Or with the Public Voice in Arts Advocacy – how can we even begin to describe the importance of the arts to politicians if we don’t first allow the artists to understand the “behind-the-scenes” of politics – I’m sure there is a bulk of information in politics that we never hear.  Read the rest of this entry »

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I feel slightly guilty not taking more time to post specifically about the Green Paper – which I believe is wonderful, makes some great points of discussion, and I highly encourage EVERYONE to read – but I must take the time, now, to focus on something that I am always an advocate for and is always on my heart …. Taking on the Leadership Role!!!

Most recently, I read a post by another individual on the ArtsBlog.  I tried looking his name up again, but had no luck in finding it.  Therefore, if you read this blog, please introduce yourself – it was refreshing to listen to you speak your mind.

Therefore, the topic of discussion I would like to bring up is this: Read the rest of this entry »

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Hello Everyone-

I have been waiting to make an “official” post until I could create a slightly organized pattern as to how these posts would go so that folks would know when to check if a new post has been published. I have decided, until the conversation gets going a bit more, I will publish one post about a specific portion of the green paper every other week, and a post about a general topic regarding the field in the weeks between. So, check the blog each Monday, and something new should be up. :)

Specific topic #1
Reading thru the green paper, I came across this sentence that I thought many of us could relate to:

“Changes in the American economic and healthcare systems, coupled with the growth of our aging populations, bring opportunities for expansion of the arts in healthcare into rural communities and the realms of public health, social services, and human services.” Read the rest of this entry »

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Welcome to the Green Paper discussion on Arts in Healthcare. We encourage you to read the full Green Paper available in the tab above and make general comments at this time. Be sure to keep your comments brief—Alie Wickham, the Ambassador for this Green Paper will soon begin deeper, threaded conversations around specific paragraphs, sections or themes that appear in this Green Paper. Follow this conversation thoroughly by adding the Arts in Healthcare feed to your RSS reader!