Music Engagement and Therapeutic Music

  • Kirsty BeilharzEmail author
Reference work entry


This chapter outlines the role of music in well-being for people near the end of life. Written for the care professional or member of a multidisciplinary team, this chapter assumes that music engagement and a therapeutic approach to music in palliative care is relevant and accessible for all healthcare professionals, not only specialists or music therapy experts. The information provided here looks at the potential impact of music on pain, agitation, and diversion and for supporting emotional and spiritual life quality. Music is especially useful as a relational tool supporting whole-person care and a good end-of-life experience for the patient and their family and friends. This knowledge can be utilized to provide music, to facilitate therapeutic musicians interacting with a patient, and to increase awareness among staff and patients, and patients’ families regarding the benefits of music in care, in particular, supporting emotional, psychosocial, spiritual, and physical needs not otherwise supported by medical care. Therapeutic music is presented from a historic, scientific, and holistic perspective, including considerations that will assist in cultural sensitivity.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Music Engagement, Palliative Care, HammondCareUniversity of New South Wales, Kolling Institute and University of Edinburgh Visiting FellowSydneyAustralia

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