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A COVID-19 UPDATE

UPDATED 9/1/2020:

To our Dear Clients,

It has been 6 months since we have seen each of you in-person, and boy do we feel that! We miss you all tremendously, and cannot wait until we can be together in the same room for music therapy and music lessons.

This is my reason for writing to you today: we feel the tension of both wanting to open back up and resume as much normalcy as possible, while we also know that we do not know enough just yet to do this in a safe manner.

While to you and your family it may only be 30-45 minutes with one of our staff members once a week, which sounds like low exposure, our team collectively works with over 60 families and facilities, which impacts all of our chances of potential exposure dramatically. Simply stated: in order to continue keeping your families safe, we are not ready to resume in-person services just yet.

We are closely following the CDC and WHO guidelines, and we are also keeping a pulse on the happenings around the State of Georgia. Once we feel that we can safely re-open our Studio space and return to visiting our client’s homes and facilities, I promise that you will be the first to know!

In the meantime, we have been thrilled to continue music therapy services via teletherapy and we are so grateful that we have this option. If you have opted not to participate in teletherapy up to this point, but would like to go ahead and get started, please reach out!

Thank you for your patience over the last two months as we have navigated this journey together. We are grateful for each of you!

Sincerely,

 

 

 

 

Mallory Even, LPMT, MT-BC
Owner & Director of Metro Music Therapy 

 

How Great Thou Art

Over the past few weeks, our team has been hard at work behind the scenes creating a virtual choir/orchestra as a gift for Ravi Zacharias from his daughter, Naomi Zacharias, who is the Director of Wellspring International.

MMT and Wellspring have partnered together over the last five years to provide music therapy services through our Songs of Hope program to hospice patients, bereaved children, and refugees who have resettled in the Atlanta area.

When Naomi approached our team with the request of creating this gift for her father, who has been undergoing cancer treatment over the last few months, we were humbled to have been asked.

Everyone at Wellspring International and RZIM have become near and dear to us over the years, and we wholeheartedly respect and admire the work they do around the globe.

While Naomi and her family navigate this difficult journey, we are honored to provide comfort in the way that we know best: through music.

You can watch the MMT virtual choir, beginning with a heartfelt message from Naomi, here.

To the Zacharias family: our thoughts, hearts, and love are with you all. #ThankYouRavi

With sincere gratitude and love,

 

Music Therapy Advocacy!

Happy Music Therapy Advocacy Month!

As a music therapy intern who just completed my internship at Metro Music Therapy, I have had the opportunity to experience the multitude of ways that music therapy can positively transform patients’ lives. Academic classes in college certainly hammered in AMTA’s definition of music therapy such that I could recite it in my sleep: “the clinical and evidence-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals within a therapeutic relationship by a credentialed professional who has completed an approved music therapy program.” Practicum sites in college gave me glimpses of how that definition applied to direct patient care. However, completing internship and learning to implement such music interventions with a more diverse variety of populations than I could have ever imagined has given me new insight into the importance of music therapy advocacy.

Music therapy groups can create a safe space with a sense of belonging for youth in the foster care system who have rarely known what belonging felt like before. They can create a welcoming community for refugee children who are navigating an entirely new country. Music therapy can provide comfort and relief from agitation for hospice patients who are nearing the end of their lives. It can increase quality of life for residents in nursing homes, assisted living, and memory care units. Music therapy can provide a unique outlet for emotional expression and processing for veterans who are suffering from symptoms of PTSD. It can help mitigate symptoms of mental illness for individuals in a behavioral health facility. Music therapy can do all of this and so much more.

Atlanta Veteran Songwriting Retreat – November 2019

With increasing advocacy efforts for music therapy, music therapists can continue to work with the populations most commonly served, expand services for those populations less commonly served, and design new programs to reach populations that have not yet had the opportunity to reap the benefits of high-quality music therapy care. As I have seen during my time at Metro Music Therapy, with a positive attitude that anything is possible, music therapy can continue to transform clients’ and patients’ lives for the better.

– Written by Haley Smith

Mindful Moments

womens centerThe path leading to the Women’s Center Labor and Delivery unit may not always lead to the ending that parents have in mind.

While experiencing some of their deepest sorrow, families at Northside Hospital are surrounded by love and support from the H.E.A.R.T.strings Perinatal Bereavement and Palliative Care team.

Perinatal Team and Mallory

Our team was thrilled to partner with this amazing department to create a relaxation CD for families who have suffered an unimaginable loss.

The MMT team poured months of work into this labor of love, and this morning, Mallory was thrilled to hand-deliver 100 “Mindful Moments” relaxation CDs to the hospital!

These CDs will be given to families upon discharge from the hospital in order to bring comfort and to create a time for healing and relaxation to take place whenever needed.

A huge thanks to our Assistant Director, Sam Shanine, for composing, recording, and producing the musical tracks for this album, to the MMT team and the H.E.A.R.T.strings team for writing the scripts, and to Selena Fettig of Beanpress Cards for the cover and insert layout and artwork.

Days like these remind us to continue to be grateful to have meaningful connections with others – whether it’s with our colleagues in the caring professions or with families that we may never meet, but who have already touched our lives.

 

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MMT & Northside Hospital

maternityMetro Music Therapy is thrilled to announce the details of their newest project that is being completed with the H.E.A.R.T. strings Perinatal Bereavement and Palliative Care office at Northside Hospital.

The MMT team and H.E.A.R.T. strings have been working for months to write original scripts and original music for a Relaxation CD for parents who have lost or are anticipating the loss of their baby.

The CD will be finished in the Fall of 2016 and once completed, will be available for public purchase. Proceeds will benefit H.E.A.R.T. strings patients at Northside Hospital.

You can learn more about the bereavement services Metro Music Therapy offers here. Click here to learn more about the H.E.A.R.T. strings Perinatal Bereavement and Palliative Care program.

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Thank you, Dr. Sacks

Written by Kally Ramminger, LPMT, MT-BC

I’ve watched the music therapy community mourn the death of Dr. Oliver Sacks over the past week. His legacy will live on forever, as he has helped so many people throughout the years understand the power that music has on one’s brain. Equally important, he also taught us the importance of preserving the humanity of every human being, regardless of their situation or diagnosis.

I’ve pulled together some of the most poignant words from Dr. Sacks (in my opinion), that have helped guide my understanding and role as a music therapist. Thank you, Dr. Oliver Sacks for your incredibly valuable contribution to this world.

You remind us that music is vital, essential to life.

Music can lift us out of depression or move us to tears – it is a remedy, a tonic, orange juice for the ear. But for many of my neurological patients, music is even more – it can provide access, even when no medication can, to movement, to speech, to life. For them, music is not a luxury, but a necessity.”

You remind us to look beyond the diagnosis of an individual.

In examining disease, we gain wisdom about anatomy and physiology and biology. In examining the person with disease, we gain wisdom about life.”

You remind us that our brain is fascinating organ and a never-ending exploration of knowledge.

It really is a very odd business that all of us, to varying degrees, have music in our heads.”

You remind us the power of death and the privilege we have as music therapists to be a part of the dying process.

When people die, they cannot be replaced. They leave holes that cannot be filled, for it is the fate — the genetic and neural fate — of every human being to be a unique individual, to find his own path, to live his own life, to die his own death.”

You remind us that no two people, diagnoses, or experiences are ever the same.

Individuality is deeply imbued in us from the very start, at the neuronal level. Even at a motor level, researchers have shown, an infant does not follow a set pattern of learning to walk or how to reach for something. Each baby experiments with different ways of reaching for objects and over the course of several months discovers or selects his own motor solutions. When we try to envisage the neural basis of such individual learning, we might imagine a “population” of movements (and their neural correlates) being strengthened or pruned away by experience.

Similar considerations arise with regard to recover and rehabilitation after strokes and other injuries. There are no rules; there is no prescribed path of recovery; every patient must discover or create his own motor and perceptual patterns, his own solutions to the challenges that face him; and it is the function of a sensitive therapist to help him in this.

And in its broadest sense, neural Darwinism implies that we are destined, whether we wish it or not, to a life of particularity and self-development, to make our own individual paths through life.”

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{All of the above quotes were direct words from Dr. Oliver Sacks.}

#Wellness – It’s for Everyone!

No matter what our daily grind entails, we all need an outlet. We all need to decompress. We all need to take our health into our own hands. And if we can be preventative as opposed to reactive, it’s going to be better for all of us. 

Wellness programs have provided a return on investment of around 3 to 1 for both direct medical cost and productivity in the workplace. Wellness and Staff Support programs focus on prevention and corporations are finding that providing wellness services for their employees are beneficial in a number of ways.

Did you know that Metro Music Therapy leads wellness sessions for healthcare providers? Our therapists provide employees in high-stress work environments with much needed downtime that can be difficult to otherwise carve out for themselves.

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Sam and Mallory led a Music Therapy & Wellness session at the Annual Retreat for the Georgia Society of Healthcare Chaplains in the fall of 2014.

Here at Metro we believe in wellness so much that we have started getting our team together once a month for our own wellness sessions! Our Clinical Director, Sarah Seo, is planning these events for us. Last month we had a morning full of coffee, conversation, and art. We created our own mandalas and had a chance to talk with the team about our current states of mind. It was such a relaxing and insightful morning for all of us. We can’t wait to see what Sarah has in store for us next month!

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2016-12-03T04:33:12+00:00May 21st, 2015|Medical, Mental Health, MT in Healthcare, Music Therapy, Wellness|
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