The practice of Family health assessment is important in ensuring that a good healthcare plan is put in place for families. If properly conducted it helps in evaluating the health matters of a family for a better understanding of family health choices which can be analyzed and then in return used to assist the family in making improved health choices. Each family is different from the other with each having a its own unique lifestyle choices, however members of the family need to stick to the family health decisions and see to it that every member adherers to them .health behaviors and decisions are influenced by priorities of the family and the family’s culture. Family health assessment therefor aims at prioritizing family focused approach towards provision of better family care in terms of health. It’s in regard to that, that these health patterns are chosen and a specific family is interviewed in regard to them using a few developed open ended questions.
The family used in this particular assessment is from India and the questions developed are asked per health pattern .Also the responses are captured in the interview abstract.
The selected interviewee was a lady who is 38 years old from India. She is married with three kids and both her parents have heart diseases while her father in law has diabetes. She together with her husband are therefore the core providers of the family. Her responses per each health pattern were as summarized below;
Health perception-My health condition is generally good with a few instances of migraines twice or once a week which is due to my busy work schedule that gives me little space to fully follow the health advice i receive. I try to maintain my health by taking traditional herbs and taking walks as a physical exercise.
Self-perception-I am educated with a job that i like. I socialize easily since I am always friendly and also family oriented as I am married with three kids.
Role relationship-I live with my extended family and I feel accomplished by the support i get from my other family members. Finance is sometimes the problem in the family but together with my husband we work extra hours to solve it and also I have friends, church and family members that sometimes offer support.
Rest/sleep- I sleep for between 4 to 6 hours a night without use of any medications to help me fall asleep except herbal tea. I wish for more sleeping time but can’t do so due to my daily schedule.
Nutrition-I am 5.6 feet high and 190 lbs. in weight, I love Indian food and I got hypertension which I take medication together with some walking exercises to help treat it.
Elimination-I usually move bowel once in two days. To ensure that this bowel movement remains regular I take prune juices every two days, fiber supplements every day and drink a lot of water.
Exercise/activity-the only exercise I do is walking though i feel that since i spend a lot of time working, it may as well be termed as part of my body exercise and the only pattern of tolerance in my life is migraines but nothing physical.
Cognition-I have pretty good eyesight and my last eye checkup was done last year. I want to start working on my diet to control my blood pressure in order to avoid future complications that may make me unable to care of myself.
Coping-taking care of my parents health is the major stress I have ever encountered but I deal with it by relying on the support I get from my family and friends whom I talk to.
Sensory perception-I am an independent and organized lady. Sometimes I suffers from minor back pains that began two years ago but I don’t take any medication for it however I plan on losing weight because my doctor told me that the back pains may be due to my weight.
Sexuality-I had my first sexual rapport at 24 and since then I have been sexually active. I see a gynecologist once a year
Wellness Family Diagnosis
Health perception-this reflects on health management patterns seen in the family during the assessment and two practices by the lady demonstrated this. For instance the lady has a natural health seeking behavior in that despite of her busy schedule at work and at home taking care of the family members, she strives and takes some traditional medicine to help deal with her migraines. She also finds time to do a simple walking exercise which is very important to her as she wants to lose some weight that has caused her back pains as confirmed by her doctor.
Role relationship pattern-this is demonstrating in detail by the lady when she says that she is involved in relationships, parenting, role performance, communication, social interaction and has a caregiver roles.as seen from the assessment, she takes care of both her parents and family in general with her husband. She interacts easily which is due to her friendly nature. She is a parent to three kids has a social life with friends and the church. This lady is actually the overall caretaker of the family because in this particular family, she is the only person who fits in the position of a woman in her society as her mother can’t fill that due to the illness.
Coping- from the family health assessment there is a point where the lady agrees that indeed she has been affected by the stress of taking care of her ailing family members, however she has been able to find ways of coping with this stress which has made her life a bit simpler. She copes well with individuals, families and community in general despite her stress. This shows that she has a very good stress management pattern that is good for a person in her position to stay healthy (Weber, 2005).
The family is recognized as an indispensable partner for promoting health in a community. The interaction of family systems through theoretical orientations that is achieved using comparative mult-case study design such as this type of family assessment healthcare helps provide useful feedback to the healthcare specialist that enables them to understand family needs in order to give the best care to family and also aides in evaluating effects of lifestyle on the general health of the family.
Weber, J. (2005). Nurses' handbook of health assesment. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.