Creative Arts Therapies

Incorporating art and music into the medical setting has been proven to enhance patient healing and outcomes. At UK HealthCare, we not only offer healing environments through artwork and art installations, but we also provide creative arts therapies. Creative arts therapies improve clinical outcomes through direct, interactive activities.

Creative arts therapists are human service professionals who use distinct arts-based methods and creative processes to improve disability and illness and optimize health and wellness. These highly skilled, trained professionals are dedicated to using their arts through evidence-based practices to improve physical, mental and emotional health.

Art expression under the direction of a trained therapist can help relieve stress, reduce pain and improve mood. Music therapists use vocal and instrumental techniques to improve communication, reduce anxiety, manage symptoms and enhance quality of life.

Creative arts therapists see patients throughout the UK HealthCare system, including Chandler Hospital (adult inpatient), Kentucky Children’s Hospital(pediatrics), Markey Cancer Center and Eastern State Hospital.

For more information about creative arts therapies, contact us at or

Academics & Research

We are fortunate to partner with the UK Music Therapy academic program, which offers a Master of Music Therapy degree and a music therapy equivalency option, to offer opportunities for student clinical experiences, including observers, practica and internships. We are also pleased to work with art and music therapy students from other fine schools, including the University of Louisville, St. Mary’s in the Woods and Belmont University.

Students: Observation, Practicum

There are opportunities to observe our creative arts therapists as they provide service, based on their availability. Persons interested in observing, shadowing, or obtaining practicum hours should inquire about availability by emailing musictherapy@uky.edy or Once contact has been made, the observer must go through the UK HealthCare clearance process through the office of Observation and Learning Experience.         

Please review all criteria and requirements for this process. It can take some time. Once cleared, the observer and therapist can agree on a time for the shadowing. Please understand that this is not guaranteed.

To learn more about music therapy visit the American Music Therapy Association website or the American Art Therapy Association.


The Mission of UK HealthCare is to provide high-quality patient care, offer educational experiences and to advance research. The Creative Arts Therapy department works closely with the UK Music Therapy academic program as well as other creative arts academic program to conduct and facilitate research to further knowledge in our field. Some areas investigated have been patient satisfaction, music therapy and strokes, and art therapy and stress, Future areas might include NAS babies, pain management, and collaborations.