Canada doctors using art to treat patients

A museum in Montreal, Canada is working with a group of doctors to help sick people. The doctors will prescribe visits to art galleries, instead of medicine. The museum is taking part in trials on patients to find out how art affects health. The patients include people with breast cancer, eating disorders, epilepsy and mental health problems. The museum's director of education and wellness believes that art heals. He said: "We saw that the museum was good for people.…If you're suffering from breast cancer, you could come to the museum and you might feel better."

A doctor with experience in helping to heal people with art therapy spoke about its benefits. She said: "There's more and more scientific proof that art therapy is good for your physical health." She said looking at art increases hormones in our bodies that are responsible for our well-being. She said these same hormones are released when we exercise. The museum's director-general said physical activity and art gave similar health benefits. She said: "I am convinced that in the 21st century, [art] will be what physical activity was for health in the 20th century."