Exploring the Intersection of Medical Migration and Music Therapy

Kristal Foster, MT-BC, NICU-MT, Neurologic Music Therapist; and Eva Marija Vukich, MA, MT-BC

Kristal Foster, MT-BC, NICU-MT, NMT Kristal is a music therapist working at Bayt Abdullah Children’s Hospice. She has 8 years of experience working in pediatric palliative care, with 4 of those years being in the Middle East. She has experience supporting ‘medical travelers’ and their families, in the United States and Kuwait.

Eva Marija Vukich, MA, MT-BC Eva is a music therapist working at Boston Children’s Hospital. Her active interests include feminist critical theory, refugee care, and the intersection of music and migration.

This dialogue is intended to investigate the phenomena of medical migration as it intersects with music therapy through case examples and literature review. ‘Medical migration’ or ‘medical tourism’ can be defined as a person or family that travels a long distance to obtain medical care that is typically of higher quality of lower cost than which is available in their place of origin (WHO, 2010). Music therapists in medical settings are frequently encountering this unique population of ‘medical travellers’. This presentation aims to provide insight into the lived experience of medical migration, and the impact on best practice (reflexive assessment, treatment and evaluation).