Nursing: Family Health Assessment

Family health is of prime importance and to maintain this maintaining a family health history is essential. According to NIS Senior Health “A family health history is a written record of a family’s health….It’s like a family tree for health” (NIS 2010). Thus, for the family health assessment, I have interviewed my neighbors who live in the county. They are a family of five with the parents aged around fifty and three boys aged 20, 18, and 15 years each. The boys are into serious sports, the elder two are seriously involved with field games and the youngest son of the family is into swimming. The overall health condition of the family is healthy and it is very good news for the family.

Questionnaire

The questionnaire I have prepared for the interview of the family is as follows:

  1. What are the most common physical problems faced inside the family?
  2. It is seen that your family is generally healthy; all the sons are involved in active sports. But what are the physical activities that are done by the parents to stay in shape?
  3. What is the average amount of sleep for the family members?
  4. What is the diet chart of the family?
  5. Every family member plays a role inside the family and what are the different roles of the family members inside the family? How role-playing does help the total peace and tranquility of the family?
  6. How do the family-members cop with the frustrations that are very usual in today’s context?
  7. What is the perception and attitude towards sex?
  8. How many times in a year do the family members visit the doctor’s clinic for check-ups?
  9. Are there any chronic problems suffered by any of the family members?
  10. Does the family have any genetic disease or record of any such disease happening to the family members or the extended family members?
  11. And the final question is that if the members of the family were exposed to any drugs or other intoxicants at any stage of their lives? If yes, then how did he or she gets out of that problem, and what were the experiences of that stage.

According to Edelman and Mandle (2005), “the use of the functional health pattern framework in assessing families throughout the life span” (Edelman & Mandle 2005) is of prime importance. The functional health patterns of the family, in this case, are encouraging. The eldest members of the family regularly go to the local health club to stay fit. The elder two sons of the family play cricket and they do necessary exercises and grueling practice sessions to prepare for the matches and that has positive effects on their health. And the youngest son, who is a swimmer, is the fittest person of the family as of the sport he plays and the training sessions he has to complete.

The family is enlisted under the Government’s family welfare program and they regularly visit the doctor for necessary health checkups. Other than that they are insured and very eager to enroll in any of the programs that the Government will take in the future for the benefit of the common people of our country.

Assessment of the family health by using the Systems Theory Guide

American Academy of Pediatrics says that that the family members of a family influence the behavior of each other in many different aspects and that is clear in this case. In this aspect family assessment is one of the most important aspects of keeping good family health throughout the country.

FHPs used in the case

  1. Self Perception and Self Concept: How do the members of the family personally feel about their health conditions and what are their concepts of the conditions of the health of the other members of his or her family? This is one of the very important questions of the interview and the answers to the question help to deconstruct the total health scenario of the family.
  2. Nutritional Metabolic Pattern: The nutritional aspects and the metabolic patterns of all the members of the family are presented in a graph sheet to show the graphical representation of the health of the family.
  3. Elimination: Another very important aspect of the part of the survey should be how the family tries to eliminate any health threats of the family and also prepare to confront any health-related issues that occur to the family. All the three sons are involved in active sports and if any injuries happen to them how do they treat those injuries.
  4. Physical Activities and Exercises: The physical activities and the exercises performed by the family to stay fit. Here we can say that the parents do work out regularly and the elder sons play cricket for a club. The third son of the family is a swimmer and thus they get enough exercise in the practice sessions and that helps to keep them healthy.
  5. Cognitive –Perceptual Pattern: The “Adaptive Capacity, Intracranial, Decreased Confusion” (KCTCS 2010) and Thought Processes of the family is healthy and can be termed as average.
  6. Sleep and Rest: According to medical practitioners, sleep and rest are two of the most important medical issues to stay healthy and fit. What are the amounts of sleep that the members of the family take every day and especially what are the rest of the days of the three sons who are involved in active sports?
  7. Self Perception and Self Concept: The family members have to keep a very clear idea of their health as they have to have an idea of the health of the other family members. This will have a profound impact on the total health of the family.
  8. Role-Relationship Pattern: In every family, all the members play different roles. The same idea can be implied in the case of the family health scenario. There are many aspects of a family’s health and health-related problems. The family we are discussing has five members and it will be really helpful if all the members of the family share responsibilities of the preservation of family health in different ways.
  9. Sexuality-Reproductive Pattern: The sons of the family are not married and so there is no question of reproduction in recent times. But they have to be careful about their sexual nature and keep away from sexual diseases.
  10. Coping with Stress: In the recent competitive atmosphere, any professional undergoes a tremendous amount of stress. Due to this type of atmosphere, every family must learn to cope with stress. This is one of the most important conditions of staying mentally fit in today’s World. The family has to know different ways to cope with stress and if necessary they must consultant psychologists.
  11. Values and Beliefs: Keeping the traditional values and beliefs is one of the most convenient ways to be happy in the family. This not only keeps the morale of the family high but also molds the attitude of the younger generation respectably.

Conclusion

Whether caring for individuals or entire families’ nurses must be cognizant of developmental and system theories that apply to family units, that is to each family. Having an understanding of the family as an integrated, living system provides the nurse with the tools needed to promote healthy living. In addition, recognizing the vital role that families play in ensuring the health and well-being of children and family members of all developmental ages poises the nurse to promote a healthy community.

References

Edelman, L., & Mandle, C. (2005). Health Promotion Throughout the Life Span. Boston: Elsevier Health Sciences.

KCTCS. (2010). Classification of Nanda Nursing Diagnoses by Gordon’s Functional Health Patterns. Web.

NIS. (2010). Creating a Family Health History. Web.