Doctors in the Canadian city of Montreal are soon starting to use art as a treatment for some of their patients, writing unusual medical prescriptions for them
A doctor's organization and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts have set up a partnership to allow doctors to write recipes for free, and this initiative is the first of its kind in the world.
The museum says visiting patients and reflecting on exhibits can help them relax and provide vitality.
The first phase of the project will begin on 1 November and doctors from the Francophone Society of Canada will be able to register up to 50 prescriptions at the museum as a supplement to traditional treatment.
The project was initiated by the Director-General of the Museum, Natalie Bundel, who believes that the health benefits of cultural experiences will soon be recognized, just like physical activity.
The beautiful atmosphere of the museum can improve mood, general feeling and health, and give patients an opportunity to stay away from the disease and its atmosphere, Bondell said.
If the experiment succeeds, Pondil hopes to become an example across the world. "We can open new doors not only for patients, but for doctors as well," she said.
"There is a growing body of research that has a positive impact on the health of people," said Dr. Helen Boyy, of the Francophone Doctors in Canada.
"I am confident that my parents will be happy to visit the museum as a form of treatment free from side effects."
Doctors will be able to write a prescription to visit museums to treat physical and psychological illnesses.
The museum offers art therapy programs, has recently been identified as a psychologist in art, and studies on the impact of museum visits on people suffering from various mental and physical illnesses, from nutritional disorders to breast cancer.