Complimentary Medicine Experience from Nina Umai

Over the years I have realized how powerful shamanic sound healing is as a tool for becoming present enough to cure illness, heal injuries, release emotional and physical pain, connect strongly with spirit, and regain one's natural, healthy balance in life. One of the reasons it is so powerful is that it can be taught as a self healing, empowering tool that people can incorporate into their every day lives. Many years ago I became very involved in opening alternative complimentary medicine sound healing programs in several hospitals across the country.

Since I had begun my life with first hand extensive hospital experience as a patient, and later was involved professionally in medical social work as a patient advocate and therapist, I knew well the pluses and minuses that came with the medical territory in hospital settings. I was very dedicated to making sure that the patients had something soothing and healing to touchstone with during their medical experience, and knew that many hospitals would benefit greatly from complimentary medical programs in sound healing. I also enjoyed bridging the gap between shamanism and the more traditional healing modalities in the world of sound healing. I became one of the earliest founding members of the complimentary medical sound healing group ACCHORD, which implemented one of the first sound healing hospital programs in the country at Sacred Heart Hospital, in Eugene, Oregon.

It was quite an amazing experience and an honor to play improvisational sound healing music on Native American flutes for people who were healing from injuries, surgeries, cancer, and immune illnesses, as well as for their families. The ethereal quality of native flute sounds offered a respite from the medical world, and allowed many patients to enter into their own private healing journey, which often sped up the healing process and gave them a sense of self empowerment. Other patients were pregnant with their babies, which is a wonderful experience to share with them through sound, and allows the mom's to meet their babies on a whole different level, which includes their spirits and souls.

Playing flute music to babies in utero is a magical way to create a sound bridge with these new beings, and can also be taught to the mom’s with vocal sound bridging so that they can meet their babies on a different level and learn to share a new language of communication. On the other end of the life spectrum, many patients were transitioning to the “other side” of life, which I was very familiar and comfortable with by that point. Helping people transition to the "other side" is a sacred gift for all involved, and often reminds us of the gentleness and beauty that can accompany the dying and transition process. Many medical settings around the world now use complimentary medical sound healing programs for healing everything from broken bones to cancer, with stellar results, which have been well documented.

While attending a New England Sound Healing Research Institute conference, which is a group I have been involved with since it’s inception several years ago, I had the honor of meeting several women who had actually healed their cancer through the use of vocal sound alone, and nothing else. The power of our own voices constantly amazes me on many levels, and is something that we all have the inborn right to learn about for our own self healing journeys through life.


"I am very excited to learn that your community is now benefiting from the talents of Sound Healing Therapist, Nina Umai Spiro. Nina Umai was founding member of our pioneer project, the ACCHORD Music Access Project in Eugene, OR which has broken new ground in therapeutic music applications in health care since 1996. She is a well-respected healing

artist in the Pacific Northwest and the East coast, conducting workshops and performing for large audiences. Her contributions to the development of the ACCHORD program included initial design of the therapeutic music offerings in hospitals and nursing homes. Her five sound therapy recordings have been used throughout the country.

Nina Umai’s 33 years as an M.S.W. therapist in private practice equips her with key skills to combine her ancient healing art of Sound Therapy with the appropriate therapeutic modality for the emotionally-based issues of each client. By training clients in sound healing, she accesses her intuitive art to assist clients in discovering their individual expression. For 15 years, Nina Umai has used her sound healing abilities in spiritual healing gatherings, sound healing concerts, meditation centers, healthcare settings and with patients in the dying process.

The power of music as an art form is exemplified in hospitals throughout the country. Examples of arts in medicine are “Arts in Medicine” at the Shands Hospital in Gainsville, GA, “Planetree” model hospitals and Sacred Heart/PeaceHealth Medical Center in Eugene, OR. Nina Umai was instrumental in the development of the Sacred Heart program which now includes sound and music offerings throughout the hospital.

I send my strong support of Nina Umai Spiro and Benedictine Hospital in the introduction of this valuable healing art to your community. I would be available to offer additional resources as needed." – Christine Magnussen, Therapeutic Harpist, Founding Director ACCHORD

"Nina Umai Spiro has played her sound healing music as a guest in my complementary medicine workshop several times. I have been touched by the depth of her music, and the positive responses from people in the workshops. Her music brings with it a peaceful, meditative quality that changes the energy in the room when she begins to play. Nina has extensive experience working as a sound healing therapist in medical settings. She was one of the original co-founders of the sound healing organization, ACCHORD, which developed the Sound Healing Program at Sacred Heart Hospital in Oregon, (one of the pioneer sound healing programs in the country). Her sound healing recordings are used across the country in medical facilities, as well as many schools and private practitioners in the healing arts. I highly recommend Nina as a positive addition to your complimentary medicine program staff, as a sound healing therapist. She is a skilled musical therapist, who reaches people deeply with her music." Mitchell Gaynor, MD, PC