Assignment: Approaches to Family Nursing Essay

Assignment: Approaches to Family Nursing Essay

Assignment Approaches to Family Nursing Essay


The concept of family health care nursing has been evolving since the last two decades and it entails thinking about and working with the family unit.  It is worth noting that the philosophy and the manner of interacting with the clients is central to the collection of information, making important interventions and advocating for the patients.  The philosophy and practice integrate the assumption that health affects all the members of families and the fact that family and illness are family events. On top of that, families have an impact on the process as well as the outcome of healthcare. Therefore, the present paper will focus on the concept of approaches to family nursing by examining family as a context, client, system and component of the society.

In this case, the family is in the background while the patient is in the foreground and therefore the family should be involved while providing care as they can participate. The community health nurse should make sure that members of the family are given roles in the care of their loved ones (Marklund, Eriksson, Lindh & Saveman, 2018). One of the instances which I have experienced in my practice where the family had to be involved in the care of their loved ones is when a family member was diagnosed with a Tuberculosis bacterial infection.  While tailoring therapy for this family member, we had to factor in the family since the medications were to be taken for more than 6 months owing to the resistant nature of the TB bacteria and one of the factors that lead to negative outcomes is non-adherence. The family was given the role of making sure that the patient received the perfect nutrition. Consequently, we sought the help of the family to ensure that one of their family members takes the anti-TB medications as prescribed and he does not miss a dose.  Every member of the family was involved to ensure that he takes the drugs on their watch.

Family as a Client

Master M was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia. As a member of the medical team, we had to find ways of breaking the news to the family members. The role of the community health nurse involves treating family members and the patient as being at the forefront while offering care (Kaakinen, Coehlo, Steele & Robinson, 2018). The mother was hypertensive and telling her that the son had cancer would have increased the blood pressure to the highest levels. Such an increase could have proved a challenge to manage. However, we managed to deliver the news and ensured that we had emergency medications such as hydralazine and amlodipine to lower blood pressure in case it shot to high levels. The father and the other siblings were utterly devastated to the extent that we had to get the help of counselors to aid them come to terms with the situation.

Family as a SystemAssignment Approaches to Family Nursing Essay

In this approach, the family is viewed as a system in which the whole unit is put into consideration rather than an individual. Therefore, the family and the individual become the primary target of a nursing intervention (Marklund, Eriksson, Lindh, & Saveman, 2018).  We had a case in which Ms. L. R. was diagnosed with vaginal cancer and according to the family history information that was collected, the mother had been taking Diethyl Stillbestrol during the pregnancy period. It was thought the diethylstilbestrol was responsible for the vaginal cancer affecting the only daughter of Mr. R and Mrs. F.  The relationship between the two soured in the preceding months with the husband blaming the mother for their daughter’s grave illness. Therefore, we had to counsel the parents and inform them that the mother was not aware of the effects the drug could have on their unborn child. The daughter was also counseled so that she could “forgive” her mother. Hence, the relationship between family members improved.

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In this approach, the family is part of the larger community and therefore there is an interaction with other institutions within

Assignment Approaches to Family Nursing Essay
Assignment Approaches to Family Nursing Essay

the community.  The role of the community health nurse encompasses educating the community on disease prevention and treatment modalities (Dorell, Isaksson, Östlund, & Sundin, 2017).  For example, Mr. M is a person living with HIV/AIDS and he has benefited from the community’s interventions of sensitizing their members on adhering to the medications. The community also has set up clinics in which I happened to work in one of them. During this period, I used to help members of the community that developed complications from the medications such as the kidney injury health problems associated with Zidovudine. The team in which a community health nurse was a member-focused on helping the patients getting alternative regimens. Therefore, the members of the community have helped with the de-stigmatization of the condition.


Offering care to clients using the family nursing approach plays an essential role in integrating the family unit. It is an undisputed fact that family should be considered as whole and when one of the members is ailing the whole unit is disrupted. All the approaches should be used simultaneously when providing care since family unit is a client, context, component of the society and a system therefore the do not work in isolation. Therefore, nurses play an essential role of guiding care using the family concept.


Discuss from your nursing experience an intervention you used with a family using each of the 4 types of approaches:

1. Family as Context

Focuses on the assessment and care of an individual patient in which the family is the context.
Individual is in the foreground and the family is in the background
Family serves as context for the individual as a resource or stressor (so the family can be either anegative or positive context).
An example of this would be in the care of children under 18. Physician rounds are generally “family centered” and done with the focus on the patient, but with discussion with both the patient and the parents or caregivers.
** For the Approaches to Family Nursing Assignment, think of a time in your clinical practice or with your own particular family when one of the members of the family needed health care and other members of the family were involved in that person\’s health care needs. Explain who the family member in need of health care was, what was the condition of the family member, health problem, and health care needs. What roles did each family member take in helping care for the individual family member?

2. Family as Client

Assesses all family members
The nurse is interested in the way all the family members are individually affected by the health/hospitalization of one member of the family unit.
The family is in the foreground.
Focus is on every member of the family.
An example of could be when a beloved matriarch of the family gets a grave diagnosis, the nurse would ask the patient how her family was dealing with the diagnosis? How are the members of your family adjusting to this news? Will the care you will need be a problem for your family?

**For the Approaches to Family Nursing Assignment, think of a time in your clinical practice or with your own particular family when one family member suffered from a health care problem and as a result other members of the family developed health care needs. Describe the health needs of all of the family members and the overall affects of the family members\’ illness on the rest of the family.

3. Family as System

The family as a whole is the patient. The focus is on the individual and the family simultaneously.
Interactions between family members become the target for nursing interventions.
Emphasis is on the interactions between the family members.
Runs on the theory that when something happens to one part of the system, the other parts of the system are affected as well (if one member of the family becomes ill, then the other members of the family are affected as well).
For example, when a child is diagnosed with cancer, the nurse may ask the father, what has changed between you and your wife since the diagnosis? How has this devastating diagnosis affected this child’s siblings?
**For the Approaches to Family Nursing Assignment, describe how the family interacts with one another when one family member becomes ill. Describe the types of interactions that occur such as one family member is in denial, one family member is crying and panicking, one family member becomes the caregiver, and so forth. Base your answer on your practice or your personal experience.

4. Family as Component of Society

Looks at the family as a component of society.
The family as a whole interacts with other institutions to receive, exchange, or give communication or services.
This is a major aspect of Community Health nursing.
Examples of this may include suggesting a support group for a patient/family for their disease, or asking how “society” (those outside of their family) have reacted to their diagnosis.
**For the Approaches to Family Nursing Assignment, describe how one family used a variety of community resources to help them care for a family member who has become ill or who has been diagnosed with a health care problem. What resources did the family use or seek? What were the results? How effective were the healthcare resources for the family and the ill family member? What problems were encountered when the family tried to obtain community resources?


Differentiate roles within a family
Discuss the role of the family healthcare nurse


THIS IS A REQUIRED REFERENCE: Kaakinen, Coehlo, Steele, Tabacco & Harmon Hanson2018 Family Health Care Nursing: Theory, Practice and Research *978-0803661660F. A. Davis Company, 2015,6th edition

Minimum of four (4) total references: two (2) references from required course materials and two (2) peer-reviewed references. All references must be no older than five years (unless making a specific point using a seminal piece of information)

Peer-reviewed references include references from professional data bases such as PubMed or CINHAL applicable to population and practice area, along with evidence based clinical practice guidelines. Examples of unacceptable references are Wikipedia, UpToDate, Epocrates, Medscape, WebMD, hospital organizations, insurance recommendations, & secondary clinical databases.


Unless otherwise specified, all the written assignment must follow APA 6th edition formatting, citations and references. Click here to download the Microsoft Word APA 6th edition template. Make sure you cross-reference the APA 6th edition book as well before submitting the assignment.

Number of Pages/Words

Unless otherwise specified all papers should have a minimum of 600 words (approximately 2.5 pages) excluding the title and reference pages.