Family Health Assessment

Mayeni Yansaneh

Grand Canyon University

February 23, 2020

Family Health Assessment

Families play a significant role on the growth and development of its individual members. Both the positive and negative influences within the family shape an individual’s personality as well. Furthermore, family relations exert a unique influence on social and cognitive development (Favez 2017). In combination, family is literally everything and every family is unique. There is a strong correlation between the mental state of the mother, her parenting behaviors, and the development of the child. Fathers are not to be forgotten because their role of protector and provider introduces an additional framework of responsibility within families. Finally, the way in which these pieces all come together show the functioning of the family. This paper will show the unique characteristics of one family using a complete family health assessment.

Family Structure

For this project, I chose to interview and assess a close family friend of my niece. For confidentiality purposes, the names of this family will not be used and will be replaced with initials. RS and ES are a married couple of in their early thirties. The two were high school sweethearts and just recently celebrated their 12th wedding anniversary. RS works as a manager for a medium sized logistics company and ES is a records specialist for a major oil and gas company. Both RS and ES make more than 50k a year but neither of them has a college degree. ES and RS have two daughters, LS age sixteen, and IS age ten. The family lives in an upper middle-class neighborhood and no extended family lives with them.

ES and RS are of Hispanic ethnicities. RS is a Mexican-American male and ES is a Dominican female. ES obtained her American citizenship a few years ago although she immigrated to the US when she was five years of age. LS and IS are natural born children of both parents so they are of mixed heritage. Although neither of them attended college, both have well-paying jobs with great benefits. The couple also purchased a two-story home in an upper middle-class neighborhood and can regularly fund a savings account and retirement funds.

Current Health Status

RS and ES have a very loving relationship as they both expressed the need to give their children the well-balanced life that neither of them experienced. Both RS and ES are the heads of the family and they equally share power. Both contribute financially to the home and both discipline the children. RS and ES create rules and guidelines for their children together and they work through any disagreements by communicating with each other. LS is the big sister and she helps to look after IS at times, but the girls are rarely left home alone. The family also takes their health seriously as everyone is covered by health insurance, they all attend annual checkups and any other sick visits that are necessary.

Health Patterns

ES and her family function quite well and there are two major functional health pattern strengths in their family system. Gordon’s Function Health Patterns is a useful tool that nurses can use to assess a family’s function with the goal of determining their strengths and barriers to great health (Karaca, 2016). The first strength is their roles and relationship patterns. All members of the family have meaningful relationships with one another and with persons outside of their household. The second strength is their coping and stress release patterns. This family copes well with stress by talking about their problems and encouraging each other. Furthermore, if there is an issue that seems to be creating a significant problem, the family would willing seek counseling for the entire unit or the individual member. I did notice some areas of improvement in relation to activity, nutrition, and sleep patterns. They do not engage in a lot of physical activity, putting them at risk for future problems. Additionally, ES and her family appear to eat out more than they prepare meals at home. Lastly, the oldest daughter and dad tend to take way more naps than is normal. Dad works long hours, but their daughter does not, and has no physical reason for sleeping such long hours during the day.

Family Systems Theory

With some minor changes, the family systems theory can help ES and her family improve their family functioning. The family systems model focuses on making behavioral changes through interactions with different family members (Johnson and Ray, 2016). The family needs to be more active and they can take walks around their beautiful neighborhood or sign the girls up for a sport. ES and RS also need to find chores and other activities for their eldest daughter to engage in to prevent her excessive sleeping in the afternoon. As a family, they should spend one day a week planning meals and cook as a family to reduce fast food intake.


ES and RS were an amazing family to assess and they are functioning well above average. It appears that the dysfunctional families they both were raised in played a major role in their decision to make things different for their children. The family communicates well, adapts well, share power and roles, and they show great concern for their health. It was refreshing to witness and family that functions well as I have often seen plenty of dysfunctional families in my nursing care.


Favez, N., Frascarolo, F., & Tissot, H. (2017). The Family Alliance Model: A Way to Study and Characterize Early Family Interactions. Frontiers in Psychology, 10.3389. Johnson, B. E., & Ray, W. A. (2016). Family systems theory. Encyclopedia of family studies, 1- 5. Karaca, Turkan, Functional Health Patterns Model – A Case Study (2016). Case Studies Journal ISSN (2305-509X) Volume 5, Issue 7, July-2016. Appendix: Questionnaire Tell me about your family’s physiological functioning and this includes health status, nutrition, bowel movements, sleep, activity, and relationships with other people. How does your family feel about sexuality and what are your values? What are your thoughts on coping behaviors in your family and self-perceptions as well as cognitive functioning?

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