Music therapy is offered to patients in the Pediatric Hematology/Oncology division during in-patient admissions and occasionally during visits to the Ambulatory Care Center. A licensed, board-certified music therapist works with children and adolescents who are experiencing side effects of chemotherapy or radiation therapy (i.e., pain, nausea, fatigue) and/or who are having difficulty tolerating painful procedures. Music therapy is also available to help patients deal with their feelings about having a serious illness or being hospitalized and away from family and friends.
Music therapy is provided when requested by the attending physician, a member of the nursing staff, a hematology/oncology social worker, or a Child Life Specialist. Music therapists develop specific treatment goals based on the patient and family’s input and feedback from the child's medical team. Techniques include singing, listening to music, playing instruments, lyric analysis, songwriting, improvisation, creating a "Life Soundtrack", and music-assisted relaxation. Instruments such as guitars, keyboards, drums and other percussion instruments are available.
Most music therapy is provided one-on-one in the patient’s room. Parents and siblings are encouraged to participate when they can and when it is appropriate. In addition, group music sessions are conducted regularly on in-patient units.
Music therapists have bachelors, masters, and/or doctoral degrees in music therapy and receive training in music, behavioral science and basic medical knowledge. They are certified by the Certification Board for Music Therapists (CBMT) and licensed by the New York State Education Department's Office of the Professions. Those who pass the national music therapy certification examination earn the credential Music Therapist-Board Certified (MT-BC) and those who are licensed in New York State are called Licensed Creative Arts Therapist (LCAT). Our music therapy program also serves as a clinical practicum and internship site for bachelors and masters level students in an accredited music therapy program.
Contact Music Therapy
Rosemary Obi, MS, LCAT, MT-BC
Phone: (585) 273-2098