Julia Jones, aka ‘Dr Rock’, has been trying to push her programme of playing nonstop rock music in almost every public venue for some years. She now has the nation’s hospitals in her sights. She wants to make it easier to play non-stop rock music throughout hospitals, including in the wards by granting the NHS a blanket licence. Her claims – that this relentless cacophony will boost the nation’s health and mental well-being – will seem absurd to many people, but we should be warned. She already has two peers – Lord Howarth and Lord Clement- Jones – seemingly signed up to support her. Her personal interest in this is very obvious – see the section in italics below – but she quotes no peer-reviewed research or studies to support her claims.
She is, however, candid about her aims: ‘I’m calling out to the UK public and decision makers to urge the music industry to quickly create two new music licences: one that health and fitness professionals can buy to use music in online classes and one that the Department for Health can buy to use music across the NHS. I truly believe that this will not only help transform the health of the nation but also provide a new health revenue stream for the music industry [my italics]…. There’s a growing number of people within the music industry who want to see this happen, but these conversations are slow. Let’s act fast. Lives are at stake.’
Patients’ healths and even lives would indeed be at stake if her proposals were accepted. Repeated evidence from bona fide, disinterested research over many years (see earlier entries) confirms that most people do not want such endless noise when they are lying ill, perhaps immobilised in hospital. Dr Jones’ interests are in truth dangerously opposed to patients’ real well-being. (No one would dispute, however, that music can be a highly effective therapeutic tool when carefully tailored for the individual needs of each patient. This is not what is being proposed.)
Write explaining all this to your own MP, who is always the relevant person to write to, calling on them to support an Early Day Motion on Jones’s proposals. The House of Commons website describes EDMs: ‘Early Day Motions (EDMs) are motions submitted for debate in the House of Commons for which no day has been fixed. As there is no specific time allocated to EDMs very few are debated.However, many attract a great deal of public interest and media coverage.’ You can also write to Lord Howarth firstname.lastname@example.org and to Lord Clement-Jones email@example.com, and to any other peers you know. (Lord Clement-Jones says he actually dislikes piped music and does not want to see hospitals filled with it. But this would be the likely effect of the proposal.)
We should, however, not bother hospitals at present, not until the Covid-19 Crisis has abated further.