At the verge of an unavoidable death by a terminal illness, music can provide succour to patients and family members by creating an oblivious atmosphere which transposes the mind “few tones” away from the graveness of the prevalent terminal condition; this captures the story told by the founder MiHI, Bola Otegbayo, as one of the key speakers at the recently held Association of Resident Doctors (ARD) event tagged ” the role of entertainment industry on healthcare delivery with terminal disease as a reference point.”

She told a story of a young boy with a terminal disease who had few months to live but decided to find comfort, despite his predicament, by playing the guitar; it was observed that his mood was always elevated whenever he played the guitar and he engaged in this till he passed on. Music might have no healing power over the body of a terminally ill individual but it definitely has power over the soul and mind of such individual as it creates a soothing and relaxing moment which allows a peaceful reminisce on beautiful memories from the past; this intervention is called music therapy.

Music therapy should be an integral part of every healthcare system and not just an abstract concept; this is the notion of the music in healthcare initiative (MiHI) made public by Bola Otegbayo in her speech at the ARD event held at the University College Hospital (UCH) Ibadan, where notable dignitaries like His Royal Highness Ojaja II Ooni of Ife, Ooni Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi and the former first lady of Oyo State Dr Florence Ajumobi were in attendance.

Music therapy helps reduce anxiety and stress; it serves as a positive distraction which alleviates pains and distresses. Also, it helps a patient relax and feel less agitated. Hence, its impact on mental wellness cannot be relegated in the healthcare system and in the lives of individuals generally.

To mark the end of the ARD event, an award in courtesy of the President of ARD, Dr Zakariyah Hussain, was presented to the Ooni of Ife alongside Dr Florence Ajumobi and Bola Otegbayo. Bola Otegbayo dedicated the award to the entire MiHI crew for their support since 2018 and also to the patients and future patients, she prays they find comfort and joy in the rhythm of Music Therapy Interventions of MiHI.

By: Yetunde Ososanya (Neithture)

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