They say art has the power to heal, and in Montreal, doctors are taking this idea very literally. Through a partnership with The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA), doctors in Montreal are now able to prescribe patients with a visit to the fine arts museum. The partnership provides doctors with an official pad of 50 slips, which they can use to grant up to two adults and two children admissions to peruse the museum’s old and new masters, visit an exhibition, or join a guided tour.
According to resident art therapist Stephen Legari—the first appointed full-time to a museum in North America—art can be a supplemental remedy for a host of ailments, from mental health disorders (such as depression or anxiety) to Alzheimer’s disease to cardiac arrhythmia. Art for heart’s sake, if you will. Or perhaps a family caring for an unwell child could benefit from some visual therapy. Since the partnership began last November, the museum has “filled” 185 prescriptions.