Uncommon music making: The functional roles of music in design for healthcare
In this paper, we discuss some uncommon settings and roles for music, demonstrating how music can aid in the design and implementation of socially responsible healthcare products that are encouraging, inclusive, and sensitive to critical contexts. We review three music-inspired design cases (CareTunes: Musical Alarms for Critical Care, Music and Senior Exercise, and We Are All Musicians and the Adaptive Use Musical Instrument) in which the authors took part. The literature review and the analysis of the case studies provide us with the following insights: music enhances sensory experiences, facilitates physical engagement with the world, music can guide medical professionals in critical contexts, and music creates social cohesion. All of these projects demonstrate the importance of involving participants (users or performers) in the process to address their life experiences. Thus, the use of music in design applications is experienced as a positive influence that can facilitate wellbeing for community members, persons with disabilities, medical patients, and healthcare professionals in the workplace.
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