During a 22-month pilot project at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center musicians used the HealthRHYTHMS drumming protocol with stem cell transplant recipients to investigate if regular music making improved their hospital experience. The evidence-based protocol was adapted to create four 30-minute sessions of hand drumming in the patient’s room. Five of the six variables surveyed were statistically significant, showing an increase in Energy, Mood, Relaxation and a decrease in Anxiety, Distress, and Pain. These promising results beg the question, why did the patients feel better after drumming? Wearable heart rate monitors such as a Fitbit or Apple Watch reveal some rough data, but measuring heart rate variability with a Bittium Faros 180 monitor allows for much more accurate data collection which will hopefully provide convincing evidence for a follow-up study. The STEP grant allowed for the purchase of the Bittium Faros 180 monitors.