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Art therapist uses sculpting to engage patient in cathartic activity.

Photo courtesy of Carilion Clinic

Imagine a care setting in which psychiatric patients can move to music with guidance from a principal dancer in a ballet company; in which a cellist plays in outpatient waiting rooms, distracting those within from the burdens of illness. Imagine a place where patients and their families take part in cathartic healing ceremonies and, together with sculptors, writers, poets and painters, create art.

This is all taking place at the Carilion Clinic in Roanoke, Va., as part of the Dr. Robert L.A. Keeley Healing Arts Program, funded by the clinic’s foundation. Carilion CEO and AHA Chair-elect Nancy Agee founded the program in 2012 and named it after Keeley, who was a champion of the arts and a physician at the hospital. For more on this story, go to the Hospitals & Health Networks website.