Tonight, in a theater full of physicians and nurses, nonprofits and activists gathered to hear stories of nature and healing, “Heart of the Hospital” launched. The short film, which offers a glimpse of how nature can be deeply incorporated into a hospital to improve patient care and outcomes, was selected by the SHIFT Festival film committee to screen at this year’s conference. The theme: the “Nature Rx” movement.
“We can think of no better forum to launch this film than here at SHIFT”, says Erin Robertson, Executive Director of the TKF Foundation, “These are impassioned innovators and change-makers, working improve public health in bold and meaningful ways. It’s truly an honor.”
The short film is part of a series the TKF Foundation has produced on the Sacred Places created as part of the National Nature Sacred Awards program. Heart of the Hospital explores the design and therapeutic, healing role of A Nature Place, a therapeutic garden situated just over the threshold of its Maternity Care Ward and Cardiovascular Unit at Legacy Emanuel Medical Center in Portland, Oregon.
The garden is a study in modern, evidence-based therapeutic green design, built on a growing understanding of the healing power of nature. Since completion in 2013, it has been a haven for laboring mothers, recovering cardiac patients, doctors and nurses. At the same time, it has also served as a study site for researchers to grow our understanding of the specific ways time spent in a healing garden impacts specific markers and aspects of health, including stress.
The research team behind the project was awarded a National Nature Sacred Award grant, which helped fund the creation of the space and companion research.