Ron and I were already champions of Dan Cohen’s world-changing Music & Memory program, which is featured in Connecting in the Land of Dementia, but we had never met Dan in person. The moment we learned we were going to New York City, we reached out to Dan and he agreed to meet with us.
Dan is a prime example of one collaborative person making a difference for thousands. Eighteen states have already funded Music & Memory rollouts as a best practice approach for care facilities to improve quality of life for persons with dementia. In Toronto, everyone who is diagnosed with dementia receives a free iPod so they can enjoy personalized music. Dan and his team have trained 5000 dementia care managers, who understand how effective this program is. He is currently collaborating with hospitals, hospice, and prisons, as well as long term care communities.
Here is some of the wisdom he shared with us.
“We all need to create our personal play lists now,” Dan says. “Music makes any healthcare encounter better. Whether you’re waiting in the doctor’s office, going into the hospital, attending rehab, or moving into a care community, you’ll have a more comfortable experience when you are able to listen to favorite songs.”