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Artwork aids healing process at Cape Coral Hospital

FGCU student paints ceiling tiles for intensive care unit

October 1, 2012
Pine Island Eagle

Patients confined to a bed in the intensive care unit at Cape Coral Hospital are grateful to Melissa Sower though, most likely, they do not know who she is. Sower is an artist and FGCU student who has created beautiful works of art on acoustic tiles that have been placed in the ceiling of five patient rooms.

The Arts in Healthcare program at Lee Memorial Health System is the instigator behind the project; it has already placed similar tiles by another artist in the Emergency Department at Gulf Coast Medical Center. Each room has a different painting of kites, hot air balloons, and night skies. The art is intended to relieve stress and offer a distraction for patients and their visitors. Melissa will continue to paint more ceiling tiles for the hospital for the remaining units.

"Melissa is a very talented artist and it is great working with her," said Doug MacGregor, the Arts in HealthCare coordinator. "We have received positive feedback from the patients, their families, and the staff in the ICU unit."

Article Photos

Samples of Artist Melissa Sower's masterpieces.

Sower, a senior at FGCU majoring in Art and Psychology plans a career as an art therapist. "It's a joy for me to be able to bring a little tranquility and relaxation to what is otherwise a sterile hospital room," she says.

The ceiling tiles are part of a series of design projects underway at the hospital. "The physical environment plays a central role in creating an optimal healing environment," says Scott Kashman, Chief Administrative Officer for Cape Coral Hospital. "It has also been shown to improve care, enhance productivity and raise the level of employee, physician and patient satisfaction.

The Arts in Healthcare program is supported by donations and volunteers. Call 343-2633 or email for more information.



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