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We envision a healthier New Jersey through the arts.

The Alliance for Arts & Health New Jersey connects artists and arts professionals and those who provide health and wellness services in order to educate, advocate, and advance best practices in arts and health.

In The News

VP Pence’s Wife Aims to Raise Awareness about Art Therapy

What is Arts in Healthcare?

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 of their lives. This rapidly growing field integrates the arts—including literary, performing, and visual arts and design—into a wide variety of healthcare and community settings for therapeutic, education, and expressive purposes.

Documented Benefits of the Arts in Healthcare


  • Improved depression and lower fatigue levels in cancer patients on chemotherapy
  • Reduced acute stress symptoms in pediatric trauma patients
  • Improved care for veterans returning from Iraq with symptoms of combat-related post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)


  • Improved executive function and emotional adjustment with Neurologic Music Therapy (NMT) in Traumatic Brain Injury rehabilitation
  • Increased capacity for flexibility and tolerance of change in children diagnosed with autism
  • Decreased use of sedatives during medical procedures


  • Improved mobility in individuals with fibromyalgia and adherence in adults with cystic fibrosis
  • Enhanced physical, psychosocial, and cognitive functioning of older adults with neurotrauma
  • Increased self-esteem and reductions in stress
  • Increased self-awareness and appreciation of one’s body, for cancer patients


  • Greater understanding and relief from isolation for breast cancer patients
  • Increased understanding of medical students, residents, and staff concerning the humanistic elements of end-of-life care
  • Enhanced ability to address cognitive functioning and quality-of-life issues important for older adults to live independently


  • Improved lung function in students and adults with asthma after written emotional expression
  • Fewer visits to physicians and reduced symptom complaints


  • Reduced stress and enhanced a sense of control—a key aspect of wellness—as indicated by several laboratory and clinical studies
  • Reduced patients’ length of stay in hospitals
  • Reduced costs by decreasing risk associated with healthcare-related infections – research shows that healthcare-related infection rates are lowered substantially when room design is effective, incorporating considerations such as proper ventilation and single occupancy

(Bar-Sela, Atid, Danos, Gabay, and Epelbaum, 2007) (Chapman, Morabito, Ladakakos, Schreier, and Knudson, 2001) (Collie, Backos, Malchiodi, and Spiegel, 2006)
(Thaut et al., 2009) (Gold and Wigram, 2006) (Loewy, Hallan, Friedman, and Martinez, 2005; Walworth, 2005)
(Bojner-Horwitz, Theorell, & Anderberg, 2003) (Goodill, 2005) (Berrol, Ooi, and Katz, 1997)
(Dibbell-Hope, 2000)
(Sinding, Gray, Grassau, Damianakis, and Hampson, 2006) (Ho, 2005) (Steckart and Rosenfeld, 2004) (Noice and Noice, 2004)
(Bray, Theodore, Patwa, Margiano, Alric, and Peck, 2003) (Pennebaker, 1997, 2004)
(Capozza, 2009) (Zhan & Miller, 2003; Pittet, Tarara, and Wenzel, 1994) (The Center for Health Design, 2003)

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