St John of God Health Care Arts and Health Update

As part of St John of God Subiaco Hospital’s Research Week we are providing you the latest update on current and future arts and health initiatives and research for patients at St John of God Health Care.

Music therapist with patient in hospital

There has been a growing understanding within St John of God Health Care of the value that the arts play in enhancing the holistic health, healing and wellbeing for each individual in our patient care as well as in the broader community.

This session will share results about the impact of the programs on patient mental wellbeing, pain reduction, musical skills/interests and the hospital environment.


  • The St John of God Frankston Rehabilitation Hospital Music for Wellbeing Program.
  • The St John of God Midland Singing Songwriting Program for patients with Parkinson’s disease


Dr Christina Davies, School of Allied Health, The University of Western Australia

Dr Christina Davies is a Research Fellow at the School of Allied Health, The University of Western Australia. Her multi-award winning research focuses on the areas of arts-health and mental wellbeing. Translating research into practice, Christina has collaborated with St John of God Health Care for the past four years to implement and evaluate the impact of hospital-based arts programs for older adults that support mental health, healing, recovery and foster artistic interests.

Jessica Smith (Speech Pathologist) St John of God Midland Public and Private Hospitals

Jessica Smith is an experienced Speech Pathologist working many years internationally and in Perth at tertiary and secondary hospitals as well as private practice working with people across the lifespan. She has a special interest and extensive experience in working with acquired communication and swallowing disorders as a result of stroke and other neurological diseases such as Parkinson’s Disease. Jessica has been working at St John of God Midland for the last 4 years and is overseeing the exciting research into singing/signwriting on patient’s wellbeing and voice production among other research the hospital and department is doing.

Dr Paula Wyndow, Independent Health Research Consultant, Telethon Kids Institute (Senior Researcher)

Dr Paula Wyndow is an experienced quantitative and qualitative researcher who has led and collaborated on a range of research projects focussing on Western Australian mothers and babies. She is passionate about the power of arts for healing and promoting wellbeing and is working with St John of God Health Care to build the evidence base for the arts through research and evaluation.

Deborah Pearson. Group Coordinator Arts and Health, St John of God Healthcare and Chairperson WA Arts and Health Consortium

 Deborah Pearson leads the development and implementation of the philosophy and framework for Arts and Health practice across St John of God Health Care. In collaboration with the Chamber for Arts and Culture WA, she developed the Arts and Health Seminar Undiscovered Opportunities: Arts in the Healing Environment (July 2014) out of which grew the WA Arts and Health Consortium.  Deborah was the project lead on the Consortium’s first project – an Examination of the use of the Arts to improve health and healing in Western Australian Hospitals (July 2016).  Deborah is currently the lead for the Consortium’s Arts on Prescription collaborative research project. Prior to this, Deborah was SJGHC’s Group Manager Leadership Development (2003-2013) and initiated the beginnings of an arts strategy for SJGHC.


Date: Wednesday 28 August 2019
Time: 12.00pm to 1.00pm presentation, 1.00pm to 1.30pm lunch and networking
Venue: Conference Centre Auditorium, St John of God Subiaco Hospital, 25 McCourt Street Subiaco


To secure your place at this free event please visit our registration page, click on 'Book Now', select the event and complete your details.