Performers range from local professionals to big-name artists such as musician and actor Charles Esten, who stars in Netflix’s “Outer Banks” and CMT’s “Nashville.” Performances for patients who request visits are scheduled weekly at some hospitals and twice a month at others, based on demand. Musicians can also video-call individuals or stream performances to multiple patients or hospitals while still taking song requests or answering questions. While programming is free for hospitals, many support the program through donations.
HCA Healthcare’s decade-long partnership with Musicians On Call has proved beneficial not only to patients, but also to their families and hospital staff, said Joanne Pulles, vice president of community engagement for HCA and president of its nonprofit foundation.
“If you [as a clinician] can see the patient relax and have a better care experience, or if you’re the family member in the room, you’re going to feel that benefit as well,” Pulles said.
Musicians On Call President and CEO Pete Griffin said more hospitals are seeking collaborations with the organization. To meet the growing demand, it announced in December it’s changing its delivery model from manual scheduling to an online platform. The new system, made possible through a $1 million donation from HCA Healthcare, will be available by the end of 2023, making it easier for patients to access their dose of music.
“The amazing part about it is that within a song—just a few minutes—the entire energy of the room is transformed,” Griffin said.