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Title: Music in hospitals : anatomy of a process
Author: Preti, Costanza
Awarding Body: Institute of Education, University of London
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2009
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The research engages with the increasing interest in the application of music in community health contexts. Previous research has tended to have a singular focus (such as on the effects of selected music on individual patients in a clinical setting) and to under-represent the role of the musician. Accordingly, the thesis sought to understand the nature, process and impact of live music in a hospital context from the perspectives of each group of stakeholders (musicians, patients, carers, medical staff and administrators). An initial web-based survey of music in hospitals led to a preliminary observational and interview study of eight musicians working in hospitals for a leading UK charity. The emergent data from these two sources was juxtaposed iteratively with related research literatures to explore the perceived reasons for musical intervention in clinical settings and the reported effects on the different groups of participants. The main fieldwork phase was a month-long qualitative study of a group of nine musicians in an Italian paediatric hospital, selected because it was relatively unique in offering a sustained programme of forty-five hours of music each week across the year for its patients. The fieldwork embraced observations of 55 musical interventions with 162 children (totalling 36 hours and 40 minutes) using a specially designed observation schedule, supplemented by video recordings and 68 interviews with members drawn from each participant group (musicians, patients, carers, medical staff and administrators). Subsequent thematic analyses - informed by grounded theory and systematic content analysis using Atlas.ti software - suggest that provision is generally valued by participants and, overall, having a positive impact on patients and hospital environment. Nevertheless, the Italian data suggest that there are also perceived negatives in such multi-faceted provision, related to the choice and variability of repertoire, musicians' relative status, available monitoring and support, and the often stressful nature of the work. Implications for policy and practice are discussed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available