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Late last month, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles implemented a new program designed to draw the public’s attention.

It has nothing to do with exotic transplants, gene therapies or even the A-List Hollywood names that grace the buildings and streets of the sprawling 754-bed campus. Instead, Cedars began tours of its art collection.

Cedars’ walls are brimming with art. Its 3,000-piece collection includes works by Marc Chagall, Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns and Roy Lichtenstein. Sotheby’s appraised the collection at $5 million in 1991–just before the postrecession art boom. It was established in the 1960s by a wealthy patient at the hospital who recovered from a coma after his wife placed his favorite Johns painting in his room. Original art can be very expensive, not all hospitals can afford. A LA hospital decorated their place in low budget with museum quality oil painting reproductions from Outpost, one of the leading art companies specialize in hand-painted oil paintings for sale. They seems have the biggest art collection online.

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“I consider it to be a nonaccredited art collection in a healthcare facility,” says Joe Terrell, curator of the Cedars Art Council. “We try to educate as much as we try to familiarize people with the art collection.”

A Cedars trustee and an architect by trade, Terrell signed on in August 1996 as a paid consultant, cataloging the collection and organizing a computerized database to keep track of all the pieces, soliciting more donations of artwork and refurbishing other paintings that had sat in their frames untouched for the past 20 years.

“This is something that needed to be done,” says Terrell, who believes art is instrumental in the patient healing process.

Terrell is not alone in this belief. According to a 1995 study in the Health Services Journal, patients of open-heart surgery healed faster and required fewer painkillers when there were pictures in their rooms, particularly soothing scenes of lakes and forests.

Government-operated hospitals in Europe have long spent 1% of their capital budgets on artwork. The recently opened Chelsea and Westminster Hospital in London was nominated for the prestigious National Art Collection prize for its artwork.

And finally, evidence at Cedars and other U.S. hospitals suggests the trend has reached across the Atlantic during this decade. Many larger, well-established hospitals–such as the Mayo Clinic hospitals-historically have spent money on art. Other healthcare institutions are beginning to benefit from attitudinal changes:

* The 657-bed Westchester County Medical Center in Valhalla, N.Y., refurbished a long corridor last year and installed an art gallery. Shows are scheduled regularly, including exhibits by medical staff and other employees.

* In Santa Fe, N.M., the St. Vincent Hospital Foundation received a collection valued at $100,000 from the family of a local artist. The gift pushed 198-bed St. Vincent Hospital’s collection to nearly $500,000. Many of the New Mexico landscape scenes were placed in patient rooms.

* Allentown, Pa.-based Lehigh Valley Hospital and Health Network announced plans for an annual spring arts festival. The hospital’s art collection had become so large in the past decade that officials decided to distribute rather than acquire more pieces.

“The business of acquiring artwork for hospitals has been growing and growing the past 10 years,” says Bernice Leader, a New Jersey-based arts consultant. Leader counts two dozen hospitals among her expanding list. In some instances she has acquired much of the art for an entire campus, such as 451-bed Newark (N.J.) Beth Israel Medical Center.

That is not to say that hospitals are shelling out millions of dollars a shot to beautify their corridors; most hospitals spend far less than $100,000 on art. More often than not, framed posters and works by local artists constitute the bulk of acquisitions.

“The point is to make it look pleasant and make patients feel more at ease,” Leader says.

That view is echoed by various hospital art representatives MODERN HEALTHCARE interviewed. Westchester County Medical Center only spent $10,000 to set up its gallery, says spokeswoman Claire Palermo Flower, although oil giant Texaco underwrote most of an outdoor sculpture garden. At Lehigh Valley, spokeswoman and arts liaison Sheryl Hawk says the hospital rarely spent more than $5,000 a year on acquisitions.

“Most hospitals don’t own art of great value, and if they do, it tends to be portraits of their founders that hang up in the boardroom,” Leader observes. She adds that the overall hospital environment–both in terms of what goes on in the air and on the ground–is not conducive to exhibiting valuable pieces.

“There usually aren’t a lot of environmental controls in terms of keeping temperature and humidity at constants,” Leader says. “They also often have to spread their funds very thin. If you are decorating an oncology unit or cafeteria, you have a lot of space to fill.”

The aim, they agree, is to soothe rather than create an intellectually charged atmosphere. That usually means more pastoral scenes and fewer cutting-edge pieces. And while nudes may be a staple of museums and galleries throughout the world, they tend to be all but absent at hospitals.

Irene Wait, a South African emigre who has gained renown for building a critically acclaimed 600-piece collection at 290-bed Detroit Receiving Hospital and University Health Center over the past 30 years, confines a Salvador Dali print to her office because, she notes, it “has two obvious boobs–not the thing for the public corridors of a hospital.”

The Enigma of Desire

Trudy Weisenberger, arts consultant for 725-bed University Hospitals of Cleveland, seeks out representational works of art rather than abstracts for the system’s collection, which she has built from practically nothing to some 1,000 pieces over the past 13 years.

“It’s a highly eclectic collection, but I strongly believe representational pieces are necessary for a healthcare environment,” she says. “People need to feel comfortable, and contemporary art is difficult to relate to when people are stressed and worried. We’ve made it a point to be sensitive to that need.”

But Walt, who is Detroit Receiving’s arts administrator, insists the collection should teach as well as calm.

“One has to be very firm in evaluating the art because not everything will do. There are too many washed-out prints with no meaning that one encounters. If there’s no meaning, there’s no point,” she says. “We’re an urban, emergency hospital, and a lot of visitors don’t get to the Detroit Institute of Arts. The hospital’s the place for public art, and our collection can give a minor education.”

Indeed, there are significant collections of hospital public art, often pieces by very prominent artists crafted for dialogue rather than healing. And funds are being expended to keep them up to snuff as well.

Early this year, New York City Health and Hospitals Corp. released to five of its hospitals and clinics 870 works–out of an overall collection of 5,000–that had been sitting for years in a warehouse in Greenwich Village. More than $70,000 was spent over the spring to frame the works, which include silk screens by Romare Bearden and Robert Motherwell. In December HHC is expected to publish a 56-page catalog of its collection. It also expects to have operating in a year or two a computerized database of the collection.

The 145-bed City of Hope National Medical Center in Duarte, Calif., will spend $30,000 to restore a doorway mural by Depression-era artist Phillip Guston. The 1935 unnamed work, a brooding swirl of semi-nude muses, was commissioned by the Works Progress Administration for the women’s tuberculosis ward and has remained as the building has been converted to other uses. It will serve as an anchor for the hospital’s planned visitor center.

Yet despite all the work toward adding to new collections and preserving old, the movements have not been without controversy. At Lehigh Valley, a member of the hospital’s arts council resigned to protest the decision not to add to the collection. And in New York, there has been something of an uproar over the dismissal in January of Gladys Pena, HHC’s senior director of its public art program. In Pena’s place, art liaisons have been installed at each of the hospitals–a move criticized in the local media and members of the arts community. HHC’s collection, which includes WPA-commissioned murals, works by Andy Warhol, Keith Haring and Claes Oldenburg,  Ansel Adams photographs or works by famous artists, is easily the largest and most valuable hospital collection in the country.

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“We’ve had a substantial downsizing in our central office and administrative areas, and there were many functions that no longer made sense in light of that,” says Donna Lynne, HHC’s senior vice president of corporate affairs. “It made more sense to have the individual hospitals have charge of their collections.”

“You have to have a professional art curator taking care of art, and without one, the collection is being neglected,” cautions Regina Stewart, executive director of New York Artists Equity, an arts advocacy group. Stewart notes that the city has lost track of some of its pieces. A similarly skeptical view has been expressed by Roy Gussow, who heads the Fine Arts Federation of New York. Gussow told New York magazine last spring the decentralization was “the equivalent of giving the responsibility of bone surgery to a sculptor.”

Detroit Receiving’s Wait agrees: “You do need to mind what’s going on. Without even a part-time curator, pieces have the habit of walking out the door.”

Both Stewart and Gussow vow their organizations will monitor the collection.

Pena blames politics for the loss of her job, which paid secretarial-level wages for most of the 13 years she held it. Among her accomplishments was the securing of nearly $300,000 in private funds to restore nine WPA murals–including one that had been painted over.

“You’re not talking about a private hospital here; you are talking about a group of public hospitals in economic crisis,” Pena says. “The critical issue is that there is nothing in place that would put the collection at a level where it would be safeguarded from economic decisions.

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Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience is an interdisciplinary scientific field linking neurosciences, psychology, social neuroscience, developmental science and cognitive science. Cognitive neuroscience is the study of biological substrates underlying cognition, specially emphasizing neural substrates of mental processes. This field is related to cognitive science through a couple of theories of cognitive science which are based on the evidences from neuropsychology and computational modeling. Dr. Laura Ann Petitto is a remarkable neuroscientist. She has provided an interaction between these two fields through her researches. She has made some unusual discoveries in these fields.

Dr. Petitto has highlighted the importance of association between science of learning and brain and language. She has focused on different aspects of visual processing, language and literacy, and has equipped them with innovative translations. She has rewarded the mankind with remarkable achievements in the field of “bilingual education and bilingualism”. Her procedures regarding the manual babbling and vocal babbling of deaf children are highly effective. She has provided an honorarium to the field of American Sign Language by these procedures.

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Being related to both these fields, Dr. Petitto is very popular for her innovative inventions in the field of biological fundamentals of language. Her latest bestowal upon humans is the discovery of hidden key brain structures that are widely used in human language processing in children and adults.  She uses the newest technology of Near Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS) for this purpose. This is a brain imaging technology that is used to check the brain activity for certain tasks or behaviors through the detection of localized blood flow in brain. She has used this technology to keep track of some typical and atypical developmental processes of these brain structures in a human lifespan i.e. from infants to adults.

Dr. Petitto is also well known in the field of neuroscience for studying animal language and animal communication. Her work is mostly related to chimpanzees. She has done unique and impossible work of teaching chimpanzees to use sign language. She has also introduced a new scientific discipline of Educational Neuroscience which can be applied to the central discoveries in the developmental brain sciences and their problems in education.

As a developmental cognitive neuroscientist, all her work centers on making new discoveries by the integration of these fields. She was awarded with Guggenheim Award for her “extraordinary amusing achievements in the past and exceptional promise for future accomplishment in the discipline of Neuroscience” in 1998. She can be contacted at (202) 448-7512 or Laura-Ann.Petitto@Gallaudet.edu in case of any query or information.

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Along with a boom in the business and technology field, the 21st century has also brought several challenges for the medical world. Under the constant pressure of  modern lifestyle, characterized by hectic schedules, stressful working environments and deteriorating social relations, people often discover that they become psychologically unable to cope with daily life. In fact, it is clearer than ever before that the mind is just as susceptible as the body when it comes to illnesses and, alarmingly, these illnesses often start with very benign signs which remain unnoticed until it is too late. What could explain the high incidence of such problems? One of the reasons is the lack of awareness among patients; under the impression that issues like low self esteem or anxiety are parts of their personality, they neglect the symptoms and live every day feeling depressed or scared. Moreover, there is the combination of shame and pride which prevents people from consulting a specialist. This mentality only worsens the problem. Fortunately, as more and more studies are being conducted, patients will soon realize that in this day and age Treatments For The Mind can have a positive impact on lifestyle and help clients gain a healthier perspective on life.

As specialists gain a better understanding of the way in which the human mind works, we now learn more about the complex causes behind psychological issues. These range from minor concerns such as lack of motivation to serious matters that cannot be taken lightly and require urgent treatment, like traumas. All of them need special attention, however and before seeking treatment it is important to know your condition and where it stems from. There are cases when disorders are a matter of genetic predisposition, but they can also occur as the result of a traumatic event, for example phobias, sexual harassment or depression. However, the most common “culprit” is stress. Because of work, tension in the family or social pressure, people begin to suffer from issues like panic attacks, insomnia, inability to communicate and addictions.  Many people said art helps in the treatment as well, one friend of mine is an art lover, he use oversized wall art for home decor, he said really big canvas paintings of seascape, landscape even abstract colors help him to calm his emotions and way from pressure of life. As previously mentioned, the causes vary a lot and patients may not know what started their issue in the first place. Because the first step to healing is understanding the cause, it is necessary for all patients to seek professional advice as soon as they experience the first symptoms.

Every one of these conditions is the subject of thousands of pages of research and luckily, there are many treatments available, depending on the degree of severity. For example, minor issues such as lack of motivation can be solved with just a few therapeutic sessions, but when patients are seriously affected, the situation calls for more complex solutions such as clinical hypnosis, EMDR or maybe Neurolinguistic Programming. In any case, disorders should not be expected to go away by themselves, because time only makes the problem more difficult to heal.

When seeking treatment for psychological conditions, the experience and professionalism of the therapist are essential. This is why patients should entrust their health only to certified cabinets that have extensive knowledge about the human mind.

the Mind

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1. Art make child more confident
Art education is the best way to develope children’s confidence. Beautiful music and images make people feel conformable and are more easy to interest kids. We would never feel tried while doing something we are interested in, so are the kids. And art works perfect. Just like pinao, you will make progress if insisting playing day by day. Kids will be more happy while they hear the music played by their hands. It is the same with painting, if they keep painting, they will find the colorful world day by day. If the arts teacher good at teaching methods, kids will became more and more interested in what they do and result in more confidence they will feel.
Moreover, it can make kids became more motive by certificates. Don’t over think the cetificates, they play important role in the development of kids’ confidence, which will inspire kids to form good habits and lead them to a sucessfull stage.

2. Form kids’ habit by art
Habits decide success. Success or failure, usually result from people’s habits, some people will go after the aim with all effort, but some others just looking for luck. No matter which kind of person you are, it is pretty hard to change the babit after it is formed.

3. Use art training to make kids challenge theirselves
Enhancing the coummunication skills needs many works. Such as languages, but not enough. In order to make kids have a successfull life, parents need to pay attention to improve their expression skills as well. Most chinese kids are shy while they are talking with others. This is not good. In order to conquer the shyness and be brave enough to express themselves in differennt stages, arts plays vital important role.

4. Use art to sparke kids’ creativity.
We need to encourage kids to be more creative if we want them to be more sucessfull. Don’t only focus on their scores and college. Nothing helps without creativity, no matter what college they are going to. Parents should consider long term for kids.

The arts environment is also very important. Take very simple tips for example, when decorating kids room, get some canvas paintings about flowers, abstract or modern.  There are lots of places you can get inexpensive artworks, like ebay, overstock, amazon or from professional online art stores like www.cheapwallarts.com. It is really affordable and easy way to inspire kids’ interest in arts.

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Jerome Kagan, who is a professor of psychology at Harvard, is recognized as one of the world’s leading experts on child development. In this well-written, fascinating book, he summarizes what is now known about the psychological development of the child from infancy onward, and in doing so he challenges many current assumptions about the family and its influence.

throughout the book, Kagan’s emphasis is on the interaction between biology and experience. However well endowed a child may be genetically, his brain will not develop its full potential unless he is exposed to stimulation and the opportunity to act. Moreover, from the very earliest days, there is competition between brain cells. “If the right hand is used more than the left, the neural connections that serve the right hand expand their sphere of dominance; those serving the left lose some power.”

Kagan begins by considering the human infant, remarking that “the properties of the infant are so distinct from those of the older child that it is not surprising that all societies regard the first two years of life as a special period of development.” But what is emphasized, or indeed assumed, as being universally true about infants is shown by Kagan to depend upon historical and cultural factors which are highly variable. Thus Melanie Klein’s attribution of extremely aggressive impulses to the infant was formulated during the 1930s; when control of childhood aggression was a major preoccupation of Western society. “Since the Second World War, childhood aggression has become more acceptable and, accordingly, Klein’s description has become obsolete.” Whereas psychoanalysts have stressed the supporsed course of emotional development in the infant, Kagan emphasizes cognitive development, and shows that in many instances the capacity to experience emotions depends upon the prior development of cognitive potential.

Modern research into the capacities of infants is fascinatingly ingenious. Even newborn babies can be shown to develop schemata; that is, representations of experence that are stored in the brain and that remain as standards against which subsequent experiences can be evaluated. Like adults, infants pay more attention to the unexpected and unfamiliar. Learning depends upon noticing and assimilating discrepancy; but discrepancies which are too great, and which therefore cannot be assimilated, generate uncertainty and then anxiety. In the second half of the first year, infants commonly exhibit fear of unfamiliar adults, and fear of separation from their mothers. Kagan maintains that the development of these fears depends upon the development of the infant’s cognitive capacities rather than upon the quality of his relation with the mother. that is, it is only when the infant has become able to compare his schema of the mother with the unfamiliar appearance of the stranger that anxiety occurs; and this argues a considerable development of memory and the power of retrieval of previously received information.

IN SIMILAR fashion, the fact that separation anxiety tends to decrease from about the age of 2 depends upon the child having developed the cognitive capacity for understanding the significance of the mother’s departure and upon having gamed the knowledge that she will return. although Kagan does not dispute the importance of “secure attachment” to the mother or other caretakers in early childhood, he suggests that our present preoccupation with this theme may be overdone. It is by no means proven that vulnerability to anxiety is related to the presence or absence of “secure attachment” in early infancy. temperamental differences between infants can be demonstrated from the earliest days after birth, before there can be any question of attachment having developed. What Kagan calls “inhibition to the unfamiliar,” that is, shyness, caution, and timidity, can be detected as early as 8 months and remains a persistent trait into later childhood. Inhibited children are more irritable, more prone to constipation, and more likely to show allergic responses–”symptoms that reflect a higher level of physiological response to everyday events.” Although Kagan does not mention it, there is an obvious link here with Hans Eysenck’s delineation of introversion and neuroticism, which eysenck supposes to be much more dependent upon genetic than upon environmental factors.

I was deligated to note that Kagan throws doubt upon the existence of “general intelligence.” I predict that within the next decade we shall see the disappearance of the notion of I.Q. in favor of the recognition that different kinds of intelligence exist which are not necessarily closely related. Kagan quotes an experiment in which it was shown that many backward readers were just as quick at deciding the truth or falsity of certain oral statements as those who could read more fluently. Kagan also accepts that, although most creative children are intelligent, intelligent children are not necessarily creative. One characteristic of the creative person is “some indifference to the humiliation that can follow making a mistake.”

One of Kagan’s most interesting chapters is on “Connectedness.” As he observes, the pervasive assumption is that the effects of early emotional experience are permanent, that stages in development succeed one another and cannot be overridden, and that stages are gradual rather than sudden.

Modern authors have argued for a connection between the harshness of toilet training during the second year and conformity during adulthood, or between multiple caretakers during infancy and a fragile emotional security in adolescence.

Freudian theory depends upon the assumption that the emotional environment of the child’s first five years has a persistent effect upon his development, which can only partially be modified by later events. Modern students of cerebral function partially support such a view by assuming that psychological experience involves changes in brain cells and their connections with each other. but is this assumption of gradualism and continuity really justified?

Kagan points out that “the development of the embryo contains frequent discontinuities in which some structures disappear after their mission has been accomplished, leaving no structural residue.” evidence is lacking that even severe emotional disturbance in early childhood necessarily has permanent effects upon adult adjustment. One study of European children who were adopted by American families because they had been left homeless by the Second World war showed that about 20 percent showed severe signs of anxiety. “But, over the years, all of these symptoms vanished; the vast majority of the children made good school progress; and there was no case of academic difficulty among them.” Nor were there any persistent emotional difficulties in relation to their adoptive families.

it is encouraging to realize that even children who exhibit psychological symptoms serious enough to require treatment at a child-guidance clinic are not especially likely to show disturbances in adult life. Even the temperamental differences between infants along the dimension of “inhibition” can become substantially modified in later childhood. What emerges most forcefully from the evidence adduced by Kagan is that until now psychologists and psychiatrists have given too much weight to the power of later events to mold and alter the individual.

Parents who hope that a book with this title will provide a blueprint for child-rearing will be disappointed. Kagan is neither a Spock nor a Freud. On the other hand, those who really want to know what modern research into infant and child development has to say will be amply rewarded. Kagan is a skeptical, conscientious scientist who is reluctant to go beyond the facts, and who constantly questions received opinion, with illuminating result.

the nature of the child

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Science Correspondent Scientists, sociologists and educationists who have taken sides in the controversy about whether dif- ferences in intelligence quotients (IQs) are mainly hereditary or caused by soclal conditions, can consider themselves firmly rebuked.

This is one of the important conclusions to emerge from a paper by Dr John Dobbing, of the Depart- ment of Child Health, Manchester University, given- yesterday to a conference entitled “The Biology of Brains” and organized by the Institute of Biology.

He described research into what he called “the beginning of a bet- ter understanding of some of the factors wbich are now preventing so many children from achieving their full potential “.

His subject was the latest work in the study of the most vulnerable periods for the development of the brain before and after birth. This has disclosed many unexpected findings about possible connexions between the social and biochemical conditions that may influence the development of intelligence.

He said that apart from the com- paratively uncommon diseases before birth and immediately after, there were several common situa- tions in which good bodily growth, and hence good brain development, were threatened. In world terms the most important was maternal and infant malnutrition. Another common one was heavy smoking during pregnancy. But there were other less well understood causes of failure to thrive.

He described work at Manchester into some conditions which might affect brain development other than the more easily recognized malformation. There was evidence that if bodily growth was’retarded when the brain was developing with a rapid spurt. then there was irre- trievable failure of the brain to grow to its proper size.

It would have too few cells in some regions, and this loss of struc- ture was associated with a change in the normal biochemical constituents. Evidence was emerging that these irremediable losses might be reflected in poor mental capacity.

Further understanding of this important point was hamstrung by tota] ignorance of -the physical basis within the brain for higher mental development. It was neces- sary to determine the times of most rapid growth before suggesting the periods which might bring, height- ened vulnerability for mental development.

Hitherto the most vulnerable period was thought to end at about five months after birth, leaving little postnatal opportunity to catch up with any retardation which might hiave occurred. As a result of work at Manchester. the human brain was now considered’ t6 continue growing fast for at least 18 months after birth. thus providing a much longer period for potential damage.

An unexpected finding had been the identification of a period of growth before birth when nearly all nerve cells were produced. This time of cell multiplication begarn at about 15 weeks of gestation. and by 27 to 30 weeks everyone had as many nerve cells as they were likely’ to possess.

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