We are excited to have published our articles as a CORAL Research Team



Avallone Mantelli, R MD; Forster, J PhD; Edelblute, A MA, LPC, MT-BC; Sinn, H MA, LPC, R-DMT; Torres, K BS; Adams, T EdD, ATR-BC, LPC; Morgan, C MFA; Henry, M MFA; Reed, K MA, LPC; Moss, Marc MD.

Creative Arts Therapy for Healthcare Professionals is Associated with Long Term Improvements in Psychological Distress. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine ():10.1097/JOM.0000000000002963, September 12, 2023. | DOI: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000002963 



Moss M, Edelblute A, Sinn H, Torres K, Forster J, Adams T, Morgan C, Henry M, Reed K. The Effect of Creative Arts Therapy on Psychological Distress in Health Care Professionals. Am J Med. 2022 Oct;135(10):1255-1262.e5. doi: 10.1016/j.amjmed.2022.04.016. Epub 2022 May 14. PMID: 35576997.



Work-related psychological distress is common among health care professionals. We determined whether 4 creative arts therapy (CAT) programs were acceptable, feasible, and improved psychological distress and job turnover intention in health care professionals with burnout symptoms.


Health care professionals were enrolled during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic from September 2020 until July 2021. Participants attended in-person weekly 90-minute group session for 12 consecutive weeks. Intervention and control subjects completed surveys before the beginning and after the end of their cohort. The study outcomes were session attendance (feasibility), program satisfaction (acceptability), and change in symptoms of anxiety, depression, burnout, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and job turnover intention.


We randomized 165 participants into 4 CAT interventions and 1 common control group across 3 sequential cohorts. Thirty-five randomized participants dropped out before the start of the cohort, and 16 were replaced from a waiting list. Therefore, the cohort consisted of 146 participants. On average, participants were 35 years old, white (85%), and female (92%). Overall, 52% were nurses, 10% were doctors, and 16% were behavioral health specialists. Participants attended a median of 9.5 [8-11] sessions. Program satisfaction was high with a median Client Satisfaction Questionnaire (CSQ-8) score of 31 [17-32] out of a possible score of 32. Participants randomized to the intervention had improvements in anxiety ( P < .0001) and depression scores ( P = .0007), total posttraumatic stress disorder score ( P =.0002), burnout scores ( P = .001, .003, .008), and turnover intention ( P = .001).


A CAT program is feasible, acceptable, and may reduce psychological distress and turnover intention for health care professionals.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT04276922.

Copyright © 2022 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Reed K, Cochran KL, Edelblute A, Manzanares D, Sinn H, Henry M, Moss M. Creative Arts Therapy as a Potential Intervention to Prevent Burnout and Build Resilience in Health Care Professionals. AACN Adv Crit Care. 2020 Jun 15;31(2):179-190. doi: 10.4037/aacnacc2020619. PMID: 32526006.


The delivery of health care is undergoing a rapid evolution that is dramatically changing the way health care professionals perform their job responsibilities. In this increasingly stressful work environment, professionals are experiencing alarming rates of burnout. Recent efforts to enhance wellness have been directed toward organizations. However, because of the nature of the work performed in intensive care units, interventions to develop individual resilience are also needed. Currently, medical centers are environments in which the emotional impact of work-related trauma is often minimized and rarely processed. Some individuals may struggle to describe or express the impact of those traumas. Through nonverbal interventions, creative arts therapy can help people access, explore, and share authentic emotion in visual, musical, physical, or written form. By reconstructing meaning through transformative methods, participants may confront, reflect, and better cope with traumatic experiences while catalyzing social support networks and deepening relational bonds in the workplace.

©2020 American Association of Critical-Care Nurses


Artwork Accompanying Publication:



Figure 1: Original artwork by Carissa Taylor, MSN, RN, CPA, Clinical Education Specialist,

Heart Institute, Children’s Hospital Colorado, 2019. Used with artist permission.

Original artwork by Alexis Heller, Operations Supervisor

Figure 4: Original artwork by Alexis Heller, Operations Supervisor,

Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders, Children’s Hospital Colorado, 2019.

Used with artist permission.

Original artwork by Kimberly Portz, Lead Room Service Coordinator

Figure 3: Original artwork by Kimberly Portz, Lead Room Service Coordinator,

Children’s Hospital Colorado, 2019. Used with artist permission.


Figure 5: Original artwork by Katherine Reed, LPC,

Program Manager and Art Therapist, Ponzio Creative Arts

Therapy Program, Children’s Hospital Colorado, 2019. Used with artist permission.


Figure 6: Original artwork by Kimberly Portz, Lead Room Service Coordinator,

Children’s Hospital Colorado, 2019. Used with artist permission.

Pulmonary Sciences (SOM)

CU Anschutz

Research Complex II

12700 East 19th Avenue


Aurora, CO 80045


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