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Research Paper On Family Health Assessment Using Gordon’s 11 Functional Health Patterns

Research Paper On Family Health Assessment Using Gordon’s 11 Functional Health Patterns

Family health assessment plays a vital role in the formulation of a suitable healthcare plan within a family setup. It aims at using a holistic approach to ensuring that the health of various individuals, communities and families remains client-centered. Since every family is unique in its own way, therefore, it is imperative to have a tool for evaluation that is appropriate for a target family by ensuring that health-related choices , perceptions and their general way of life of the family members has been put into consideration. In the context of family health assessment, the term family is simply meant to represent the biological parents and children living together. In this paper, I will discuss my analysis bases on Gordon’s 11 functional health patterns assessment. I will assess the family whose profile is as follows; The family has a father who is 46 years old, a mother (39years), four children two boys(10 and 16 years) and two girls who are 4 and 6 years old respectively. All the members of the family are in good health. However, the 10 year old son was diagnosed with ADHD when he was four years old and OCD when he was six years of age.

Pattern of Health Perception and Health Management
In a scale of 1-10, the family scores themselves 8 in regard to their health perception and general well-being. The family does not use any drugs, smoke nor drink alcohol. The father said that he has thalassemia minor, which is a genetic disorder which he inherited from his father. This genetic blood disorder also manifests itself on his 4year old daughter. The mother is in good health condition although she has a very minor gastroesphageal reflux disease (GERD). She says that she has been taking protonix on a daily basis. The two boys recorded no health conditions. In addition, this family engages themselves in various outdoor activities such as biking, swimming and camping although not very regularly.

Nutritional – Metabolic Pattern
The family strives to eat a healthy diet on a daily basis. This diet usually consist of low fat/sodium, consumption of whole bread and high fiber foods. The family takes juice in moderation and also drinks a lot of water. The father, who is also the main person in food preparation, ensures that his family eats healthy foods. According to Gordon’s 11, his framework refers to various factors that influences food intake, these includes family values, knowledge on preparation among other influences (Bomar, 2008, p.14). The father has proven to be a positive influence in regard to eating health foods. Generally, the family’s appetite is great and none of the members of the family has shown extreme changes on their skin, body weight, nail texture or hair color. However, the father’s body weight has been observed to be fluctuating since he lost his job.

Pattern of Elimination
In regard to the pattern of elimination, this aspect largely varies with every individual family. The father experiences regular bowel movements especially in the morning immediately after breakfast. The 5year old daughter and the mother suffer from constipation while the other three children are noted to experience one bowel movement every day. Their urine appearance is yellow in color and clear without sediments, no member of the family experiences pain during urination. The family uses laxatives rarely, particularly after a long car or plane trip.

Pattern of Activity and Exercise
This family does not indulge themselves in exercises on a daily basis but has an active lifestyle. All members of the family enjoy riding the bicycle, hiking, swimming and camping. Mostly, the parents prefer to exercises on an elliptical. Both boys enjoy playing soccer while the girls love dancing and playing piano. Other whole family activities include watching television, or playing video games although these are usually regulated. All these activities enable the family to build unity and trust.

Cognitive – Perceptual Pattern
There is no member of the family who was reported to be having any form of celebrovascular disorders, autoimmune disorders or ay degenerative neurologic disorders. The mother and her 10 years old son are both short-sighted while both girls are long-sighted. The father had undergone eye surgery about 8 years ago and thus leading him to wearing glasses. Apart from these eye disorders, there exist no other sensory disorders in the family.

Pattern of Sleep and Rest
The family seems to enjoy adequate sleep since the children have a specific routine for sleep. Normally, the children sleep for 9-10 hours every night while the parents sleep for 6-7 hours. Nonetheless, the mother’s sleeping pattern is largely affected when she works in the night shift in her nursing job.

Pattern of Self Perception and Self Concept
The 10 years old sold appears to be having a lot of problem expressing himself as a person. He expressed very important clues that portrayed disturbances in his self-esteem, identity confusion and showed signs of powerlessness. The young boy has been receiving regular treatment for his depression. The family considers itself able to adjust themselves effectively to various changes such as loss of income or employment.

Role – Relationship Pattern
The individual family members acknowledged the role of the mother to be that of the sole breadwinner after the father lost his job. The father’s role is that of a caregiver. Numerous issues especially those in regard to threat of change and loss ends up causing stress especially to the mother who is duly expected to combine both family chores and work.

Sexuality – Reproductive Pattern
The parents say that they have a sexually fulfilling relationship. The mother is reported to have carried 8 pregnancies and had 4 births. In addition, the family reports that the two older boys receive sex education with their school system of learning but it is also reinforced at home. The oldest boy has been taught the need for proper testicular self-examination. Additionally, the mother carries out breast-self examination on a regular basis.

Pattern of Coping and Stress Tolerance
The family says that they manage to cope with stress by applying a number of strategies that they claim took them years to learn. These stress management strategies includes spending time with close friends, family members or spending time away from each other for a while. The family seems to understand that stress is a necessary part of our lives.

Pattern of Values and Beliefs
The family reports that they are not staunch followers of any given religion but they believe in doing good and avoiding evil. They indicated that they value their family most. They are a very closely bonded family which does a lot of activities together.

The totality and holism of individual interactions with their environment provides the foundation for an effective family health assessment (Bomar, 2008, p.24). Using the Gordon framework, I have assessed that this family has no major health issues or obvious illnesses instead, they ensure proper health maintenance that helps them to stay healthy. In general, the family is health conscious.

Bomar, P. J. (2004). Promoting health in families: Applying family research and theory to
nursing practice. Philadelphia, Penns: Saunders.


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