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UMG ADDS MUSIC TO DEMENTIA CARE

Music wellness technology innovator Music Health has developed and launched Vera, an intuitive music intervention tool designed for the care of people affected by dementia. Users are able to access Universal Music Group’s entire catalog.

Vera App users are able to develop personalized music stations specifically designed to improve the lives of people living with dementia.

The announcement follows the launch at Universal Music UK of the Power Of Music, a report from UK Music and Music for Dementia, which outlines a blueprint to use music to help transform communities and improve the U.K.’s health and well-being. It includes a commitment from Universal Music UK to develop an online resource that will serve as a music and dementia information hub.  

“From rigorous workouts to peaceful meditation to restorative sleep cycles, music is deeply integrated into numerous innovations promoting health and wellbeing,” said Michael Nash, UMG’s Executive Vice President of Digital Strategy. “Now, scientists are finding that music is also a powerful tool for helping those suffering from the effects of dementia and memory loss. At UMG, we are working with a wide range of companies to develop therapeutical applications of music and we ’re proud to partner with Music Health on Vera to help improve the lives of so many around the world.”

Vera analyzes the age of the dementia-affected person, where they grew up and how they react to certain music. It uses these criteria to autonomously curate the right songs at the right times to effectively manage the behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD).  

More than 80% of people living with dementia experience BPSD, manifesting as agitation, aggression, depression or confusion. Vera stimulates the part of the brain responsible for long-term memory to help manage the impact of BPSD, easing the care routine of those living with dementia. Listening to personally significant music—all the noteworthy songs from our own life—is shown to effectively decrease the effects of BPSD helping to improve mood, cognitive function, motor functions and brain plasticity. 

Vera, said Music Health Co-Founder Stephen Hunt, “acts like a music detective, that seeks out tunes that they used to love a long time ago but may have forgotten about, which their carers may have never heard of, and their families may not even know.” 

Vera is currently in trials with BUPA, an international healthcare company headquartered in the U.K. serving more than 31m customers across the world, as well as several of Australia’s most innovative health and aged care providers offering hospital care, residential care and community services.

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