Music & Memory Program - An Innovative Approach to Dementia Care

WI Music and Memory

Press Release: Governor Scott Walker joined the family and friends of former Department of Health Secretary Kitty Rhoades on September 6, 2016 in Hudson for the announcement of the “Secretary Kitty Rhoades Music & Memory Grant,” which brings personalized music to Wisconsin residents living with dementia.


In 2013, Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) staff watched a six-minute video clip of Henry, and it changed their lives. This video shows the power personalized music has on a person with profound dementia. Henry comes alive; communicating with his family, sharing long-locked memories and the joy he is feeling.

DHS staff contacted Dan Cohen's MUSIC & MEMORYSM Project and, with creative funding, established the Wisconsin Music & Memory Program which trains and supports staff in the program as part of the DHS effort to improve the care of residents with dementia and decrease the use of harmful medications.

The Wisconsin Music & Memory Program has successfully funded over 300 nursing homes to become certified MUSIC & MEMORYSM facilities and provide equipment for over 3,500 nursing home residents through the MUSIC & MEMORY SM Certification Program. This program has now expanded to assisted living communities and other health care facilities.

Tips, hints, lessons learned and other resources for Wisconsin Music & Memory participants.

If you haven't met Henry, spend just six minutes to see the effect the Wisconsin Music & Memory Program can have on the lives of those with Alzheimer's and other dementias.

What are the benefits to participants?



In The News

The Music & Memory Program
Claude Pepper Center trailer featuring Secretary Kitty Rhoades

Find a Music & Memory Facility

A searchable database will be coming soon. Its purpose will be to help you find a facility that is participating in the Music & Memory Program.






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Last Revised: September 13, 2016