The NHS should have access to chart topping tracks following the Covid-19 pandemic with Government-backed licences allowing better music in hospitals and fitness classes, peers and medical leaders have claimed.
Doctors and music experts have asked the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) to foot the bill for licences to play pop classics and modern day hits to benefit staff and those being treated.
Campaigners are calling for the Government to support chart topping tunes in wards, staff rooms, and receptions across NHS trusts due to the positive impact of music on health and well-being.
Lords and medical professionals have also urged easier licencing for fitness instructors to source background tracks for classes following the success of Joe Wicks’ broadcasts during the coronavirus lockdown.
They argue that music should be simpler to access for those keeping the UK fit and healthy following the pandemic.
Currently individual trusts must pay for licences for different areas of care, and even sections of hospitals, and campaigners want the process to be simplified with a blanket licence bought by the DHSC.
They argue a similar arrangement is already in place for the Department for Education, allowing copyrighted music to be played in schools.
“It’s just daft,” said campaigner and signatory Dr Julia Jones, who has studied the impact of beloved songs on well-being.
“There is so much evidence to show the beneficial effects of music on the brain, and we’re denying that to healthcare professionals. It just doesn’t make sense.
“Given the scientific evidence for its well-known benefits, having healthcare without music is like getting Usain Bolt to do the 100 metre sprint with wellies on. It’s ludicrous.
“There are different tariffs for the staff room, for the ward, for the reception area. It’s far too complicated, and would cost individual trusts too much to justify.
“We believe the Department of Health should pay for a blanket license for healthcare. It is an investment.”
Lord Tim Clement-Jones, chairman of the Music in Society inquiry, and Lord Alan Howart have signed the letter calling for Government to arrange a blanket licence for the NHS.
The plea also calls for a straightforward process to allow fitness instructors like Mr Wicks to source soundtracks to their classes, without fear of fines.
The letter suggests annual licences should be made available for these purposed from licencing body Phonographic Performance Limited and right management group PRS for Music.