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Using art to support the mental health of our healthcare workers


* This is a pilot program that we are grateful to have received funding to administer through the National Endowment for the Arts. If you do not work for one of the 6 hospitals listed below, and you believe your hospital can benefit from this program, please let us know by submitting the inquiry form below, and join our facebook group to stay up to date on our locations offered and connect with other medical staff across the country!

ART in the ER is a re-launch of our successful 2020 hospital program which served more than 30 hospitals across the continental United States. Read more about our work during the Pandemic that inspired this.

Large blank canvases were set-up in staff rooms, with paint supplies nearby and a simple direction sheet in sight. Whenever medical staff needed a break, they were encouraged to paint. After consistent monitoring and feedback, it became evident this program is not only justified during the Pandemic; healthcare workers are always in need of more activities specifically geared towards improving their mental health. We found that utilizing art as a tool for improving the morale and mental health of medical staff notably improved the quality of care given.

In 2023, the focus will be on underserved hospitals within the Navajo, Hopi, and Apache Nations, with whom we have pre-established relationships with that were initiated in 2020 during the first iteration of the program. We will provide blank canvas installations, art supplies, and unique and targeted educational information to staff rooms in order to benefit staff morale and mental health.


Identified Hospitals*


Gallup Indian Medical Center


Hopi Health Care Center


Tuba City Regional Healthcare Center


Flagstaff Medical Center


Sage Memorial Hospital


White Mountain Regional Medical Center

* All hospitals are within the Navajo, Hopi, and Apache Nations and are located within a 200 mile radius of each other.


These hospitals are relevant because they are:


Native American Reservations generally receive notably less access to artistic opportunity. They are deprived of access to education, food (the reservations can be understood as “food deserts” – often, one might need to drive hours to the nearest supermarket), and other basic necessities. As a result, spending towards the arts is significantly lower than other areas in the US.

ETHNICALLY & economically-underserved

These hospitals are ethnically and economically underserved because they are within historically disenfranchised communities. 

During the Covid-19 Pandemic, there was an overwhelming amount of PPE donations directed towards the Navajo nation. However, during this time, nothing specific was provided to benefit the morale of the overwhelmed frontline medical staff. Each of the 6 hospitals listed above were so appreciative of our program, and often remarked how much this would help their staff past the Pandemic.


Learn more

the hopi nation

Learn more

apache nation

Learn more

The Navajo Nation, the largest Native American reservation in the United States, spans across the states of Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah. Known for its rich cultural heritage, stunning landscapes, and traditional Navajo artistry, it is home to a vibrant community with a deep connection to their ancestral land. The Navajo Nation embodies a resilient spirit, preserving their traditions while adapting to the modern world.

The Hopi Nation, is celebrated for its ancient culture and spiritual traditions. Nestled atop 3 mesas, the Hopi people maintain a strong connection to the land, practicing agriculture and intricate crafts. Their Katsina religious ceremonies and intricate pottery are renowned, reflecting their unique heritage. The Hopi Nation's commitment to preserving their customs in a modern world showcases their deep-rooted resilience.

The Apache Nation comprises various Native American tribes residing in the Southwest and is known for their strong warrior traditions. The Apaches maintain a deep connection to their ancestral lands, demonstrating cultural richness through vibrant dances, intricate basketry, and profound reverence for the natural world. Their heritage perseveres, reflecting a strong sense of identity and resilience in the face of modern challenges.

program overview

Coming Soon

  • Correlation between google ratings and patient satisfaction - will it go up?
  • Inbound satisfaction survey vs. exit satisfaction survey - Strong focus on mental health of staff
Indicator examples include # of hospital partnerships, # of canvases sent, # of resulting images shared, which symbols and colors were more prevalent on each hospital’s canvas, amount of blank space left on the canvas, amount of time it takes for a canvas to be full. We focus on outputs that can not only be indicators of the volume of participation, but rather place an emphasis on understanding the resiliency and morale levels of the hospital staff that participate.


the 6 hospitals we will be serving:

Gallup Indian Medical Center

A 99-bed hospital, on the border of the Navajo Reservation. The workload at Gallup is one of the largest in the Indian Health Service with 250,000 outpatient encounters and 5,800 inpatient admissions annually. GIMC has the largest staff of all Navajo Area IHS facilities.

2.5 out of 5

63 reviews

Hopi Health Care Center

3 out of 5

Built on the Hopi Reservation and serves approximately 7,000 people from both the Hopi and Navajo tribes. The Service Unit site was selected for its central accessibility, where most residents can reach the Center within 35-40 minutes.

9 reviews

Tuba City Regional Healthcare Center

2.9 out of 5

A 73-bed, acute and outpatient regional health system organized as a private nonprofit healthcare. Tuba City Regional Health Care Corporation, a Joint Commission accredited health center, provides services to a 6,000 square mile area and serves as a referral center for the western part of the Navajo and Hopi Reservations.

72 reviews

Flagstaff Medical Center

4.6 out of 5

Flagstaff Medical Center is a standout regional hospital distinguished by its high-quality care and specialty services, including an award-winning spine surgery program; comprehensive inpatient and outpatient behavioral health services; and the only Level 1 Trauma Center north of Phoenix.

1,751 reviews

Sage Memorial Hospital

3.6 out of 5

A 25 bed inpatient facility offering the following key services: radiology, pharmacy, telemedicine, and a 24/7 Emergency Room. Specialized clinics also serve the community including a Dental Clinic, Diabetes Clinic and a Behavioral Health Clinic. The hospital also operates three field clinics which are located in Greasewood, Wide Ruins, and Sanders.

106 reviews

White Mountain Regional Medical Center

3.7 out of 5

A 21 bed Critical Access Hospital. White Mountain Regional Medical Center is currently a Level 4 Trauma Center, and also received Pediatric Emergency Certification. White Mountain Regional Medical Center will provide caring services and operate on a financially sound basis to ensure its continuing ability to meet the needs of patients and the communities it serves.

33 reviews



Coordinate kick-off meetings with staff (via zoom) to discuss process, installation, and support offered.

Project-packs prepared

  • Large blank canvases
  • Painting supplies (paints, brushes, painter’s palettes, canvas tarps, etc.),
  • Program description sheets
  • Direction posters
  • QR code cards (linking to a “join community” page connecting participants with other healthcare workers participating in the program)
  • Question cards (part of programming, a way to monitor sentiment before/after program participation)


Email / phone check-in’s and PTW staff available, as needed.


  • Physical check-in to replenish all supplies, execute a creativity workshop, and administer both qualitative & quantitative surveys in order to effectively monitor impact.
  • 2 Jungian Analysts and 2 local community advisors will participate on a panel wherein the pieces will be described and analyzed (using specific criteria we will continue to develop this year).
  • Report back to hospital POC the most up to date data found from artwork study and survey results.


Fall 2023

Re-engage all stakeholders. Send project plan, proposed timeline, outputs, etc.

January 2024, Week 1-2

Fully engage stakeholders through a group kick-off call via zoom. Officially launch project. Send preliminary project materials shortly thereafter.

January 2024, Week 3-4

Drop off project-packs at all 6 participating hospitals. Help set-up. Run first workshop with hospital staff.

March 2024, Week 1 / End of Q1

2nd round of site visits. Replenish materials. Run second workshop with hospital staff based on previous engagement. Administer quantitative and qualitative surveys. 1st panel with analysts.

March 2024, Week 4 / End of Q1

Final round of site visits. Replenish materials. Run third workshop with hospital staff based on previous engagement. Administer quantitative and qualitative surveys. 2nd panel with analysts.

April 2024, Week 1-4 / Beginning of Q1

Final internal After Action Review (AAR). Share results with all stakeholders and produce culminating impact report.

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