When it comes to defining family many people have many different ways to define family because it means something different to everyone. Overtime the typically family has changed and is much more diverse when it comes to the individuals that make up the family because of beliefs and values. The way that it is defined currently is a family is a set of interacting individual is related by blood, marriage, cohabitation, or adoption who interdependently perform relevant functions by fulfilling expected roles (Edelman & Mandel, 2012). When it comes to health promotion and disease prevention the family is the primary source in which individuals learn how to deal with these issues and influence the individual. When it comes to family care and support the best approach is to make it as family centered as possible. According to Gordon, functional health patterns encompass human growth and development, represents bio psychosocial expressions of the whole person, and allow for developmental assessment of client-environment interaction (Krozy & McCarthy, 2002). This paper will focus on a family assessment performed by using a family centered approach known as Gordon’s 11 functional health patterns. Gordon’s 11 functional health patterns help organize basic family assessment information (Edelman & Mandel, 2012). The functional patterns help nurses to better assess a family and develop a proper nursing diagnosis for the family which results in better results for the family. The author of this paper will be focusing on a health assessment of an African American family after a thorough interview. The family consists of two adults Mr. & Mrs. Ransome and their two children. Mr. Ransome is 52 yrs. old, Mrs. Ransome is 49 yrs. old, their daughter is 10 yrs. old and their son is 14 yrs. old. The interview conducted uses Gordon’s 11 function health patterns to assist with the assessment and is followed by two wellness nursing diagnoses concluded based upon the family interview. At the conclusion of this paper the questions used in the interview can be found in the addendum. Gordon’s 11 Functional Health Patterns
Health Perception/Health Management
Family history begins with the health perception-health management pattern (Paniagua, Reilly, Evans, & Bond, 2011). The assessment of this family begins with their family values and health perception. At the beginning of the interview the family mentions that religion plays a big role in their day to day life. Each day begins with a moment of prayer, just asking God’s protection and guidance throughout the day. The family attends church services during the week. When it comes to family meals the family usually eats together as a family unless they have other activities occurring that day or week. When the family is unable to eat together the children usually eat together while the adults will wait for one another to have their meal together. In this family dinner time is the time set aside for each family member to discuss their day and any new events that have occurred during that day. As far as health promotion and disease prevention the family uses multiple methods health practices and preventing illness. The way that the family does this is by maintaining a healthy lifestyle, keeping up on routine medical checkups, and getting proper immunizations when needed(A. Ransome, personal communication, June 20, 2012). Nutrition
When it comes to nutrition, Mrs. Ransome ensures that the family eats the regular schedule meals throughout the day and makes sure that each meal is a well-balanced meal. The family usually consumes must meals at home but when pressed for time they usually grab a quick meal outside of the home. Meals are described as a mixture of fried and baked foods and all foods are not always the healthiest. In between meal snacks for the children are hard to monitor but are suggested to be on the healthier side usually fruit. This family does have a huge sweet tooth when it comes to baked goods. Mrs. Ransome is a baker and usually makes 2-3 baked goods a week for the family to enjoy. Food is never used as an award or punishment, just seen as nourishment when the body is in need (A. Ransome, June 20, 2012). Sleep/Rest
Rest habits characterize the sleep-rest pattern. Without the restorative function of sleep, individual’s exhibit decreased performance, bad temper, and decreased stress tolerance and may rely on substances such as alcohol, or other chemicals to induce sleep (Edelman & Mandel, 2012). Sleep habits is very different when it comes to this particular family. The children usually get 7-8 hours of sleep each night as they have an assigned bedtime which is 9:00pm and is enforced on a nightly basis except weekends. The children is allowed to stay up later on weekends but are not getting up as early on those days unless there is an activity or event to attend. As far as Mr. Ransome he states that he gets about 6-7 hours of sleep after coming home from work and helping with the children and finishing any work related tasks. Mr. & Mrs. Ransome very rarely has the same bedtime, he usually is in bed before his wife. Mrs. Ransome usually receives 4-5 hours of sleep at most during the week. The reason for this is Mrs. Ransome works from home and also holds many positions on multiple committees and is often up late finishing work for that and just preparing for the previous day. Although she gets little amount of sleep at night Mrs. Ransome states that she is rarely tired as her body is accustomed to her pattern of sleep (A. & E. Ransome, personal communication, June 20, 2012). Elimination
This is an overlooked issue usually in families because they do not really analyze their normal elimination pattern on a daily basis. No one has issues with elimination in this family but the children are usually the ones closely monitored by the parents. Mrs. Ransome ensures that there are plenty of fruits and vegetables in the children diets to ensure a regular elimination pattern when it comes to bowel movements. The parents also make sure that the children are consuming enough water and remain hydrated on a daily basis to prevent constipation. Often times Mrs. Ransome can tell when her children has not had a bowel movement in a few days as she states that they exhibits signs of nausea/vomiting and usually complains of headaches. The remedy that is given to the children if this occurs is children castor oil or the child drinks tea or warm water (A. Ransome, personal communication, June 20, 2012). Activity/Exercise
This topic is important to this family but the family is not always able to set aside time for this. The family notes how exercise maintains good health and is a great source of energy. For children’s schedules when it comes to activities and sports they are involved in. They cannot always find time to exercise on a regular basis but they know how essential it is to maintain a healthy lifestyle. However, their children get exercise daily with the activities that they are involved in and they also get exercise from the sports that they participate in. None of the adults or children is noted to be overweight or suffering from obesity. Cognitive
Communication plays a big part in how this family functions on a day to day basis and it helps the family run as smoothly as it does. The family has such a busy schedule each day that without communication the day would not run smoothly and a lot of misunderstanding would take place. With communication being such a big part of this family’s routine, no decision is ever made without a family discussion or a discussion between the adults. Mr. Ransome states that when there is a disagreement between the two siblings they are to talk the issue out and come to an agreement among themselves because they want to instill in their children to never be upset over something that could have been talked about. In this family there motto is just talk it out because it takes too much energy to be anger. Being that they are a religious family talking out problems is even more important than most families (A. & E. Ransome, personal communication, June, 20, 2012). Sensory-Perception
Love is very evident in this family and in every member of this family. The family has a welcoming spirit and treats everyone like they are a part of their family or as least that’s how the person may feel. Emotions are often expressed and openly talked about because the family feels that it is important to family growth. The most important aspect that is instilled in their children and in their family life is love. Self-Perception
The family is very active in their community and in their church community. They are respected in the community and they value their reputation that they hold in the community. They are a very family oriented family and they believe what sets them apart from other families in the 21st century. They still hold the perspective that family comes first no matter what may least once a month with extended family. Mrs. Ransome comes from a large family of 14 siblings so is used to a large family and large family gatherings. The family lives in a large 4 bedroom home with plenty of room for entertaining and large family gatherings. The children state that they have a very tight, close relationship with all of their cousins and love spending time with them (A. & R. Ransome, personal communication, June 20, 2012). Role Relationship
In this family the male is seen as the head of the family and of the house hold, being that this family has strong religious beliefs as mention previously their religion belief is the man is the head of the family. The wife plays a role in the family as well but the husband is the glue that holds the whole family together. Decisions are discussed among the family and the adults but the husband usually has the finally say in the decision. All adults are equal but each has their particular roles to play in the family and in the marriage. Sexuality
As mention previously the couples has two children together and have no plans to extend their family at this time. Mr. & Mrs. Ransome also begin their family together later in life so the risk of having more children was considered when this decision was made to stop. The couple views sexuality as a good thing when two people are married it is actually encouraged as opposed to when one is unmarried. The couple views this as private and sacred matter. Coping
This area of the family’s life is where their religion really comes into play and their faith is most exercised. When faced with issues that are very hard to deal with the family not only leans on the family for support but they lean on their faith also for comforting. The family feels that without God to help them through many of their tough life situations they would have not been able to deal with some of the issues the way they did. Before evening trying to come to a conclusion or understanding of a situation it is first prayed upon so one can get clarity. Wellness Nursing Diagnoses
The two wellness nursing diagnoses that fit this family after performing the assessment and interview process are readiness for enhanced sleep and readiness for enhanced activity-exercise pattern. The reason for these two choices is because these are the two areas that the family is in need of a better routine/schedule and they are important to a healthy balanced life. Mrs. Ransome rarely gets more than 5 hours of sleep a night and that is not healthy for her to function on a daily basis. This sleep pattern may not bother her now but it will check up in the later years to come. Also, the two adults do not really have time to exercise on a daily basis. By adjusting their schedules a little too at least permit 20-30 minutes a day for exercising can create a healthier lifestyle. It will make them feel better and give them energy needed to keep up with their busy family schedule.
When performing an assessment of a family as a whole one can learn a lot from the family and the individuals of the families and how those individuals make up a family. Once a family is looked at it helps one to get to know the family and the individuals for what they are and how they contribute to the family. When it is said and done many families can see that they are so many similarities and some differences but it shows how diverse families are and how their beliefs and values are important to that particular family just like another families values and beliefs are important to them.