A significant part of health issues can be evaded by changing societal norms and lifestyle behaviors. Eliminating the harmful effects of socioeconomic factors became a priority for the United States (Adler et al., 2016). The country continues to stay one of the top countries that spend an immense amount of money on medical expenses, while not putting enough effort into eliminating their sources (Adler et al., 2016). This essay analyzes the influence of socioeconomic factors and the family health model on the example of the Petersons family.
The family is described as being a middle-to-low class, without an established routine for physical activities, and lacking mental health support. Moreover, the family includes an older person with decreasing physical health due to her age, who has trouble with accommodations. Adler et al. (2016) state that “higher income is related to better health outcomes, including a lower prevalence of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and depression as well as lower age-adjusted mortality.” The primary social determinants of health that affect Petersons include lack of social support and housing design not being suited for older people. To reduce the impact of these issues, the government assists people who suffer from mental distress, as well as older adults, and Petersons should take a closer look at available options. These problems have an adverse impact on the family’s health as they must be addressed as soon as possible.
It is also crucial to provide necessary screenings for family members to detect potential health issues in early development. Mental health issues that affect Peterson’s daughter should be addressed through depression screening, which is vital for preventing further progression. Maurer et al. (2018) state that “screening is recommended for all adults older than 18 years, regardless of risk factors” (p. 510). As family mental health is currently overlooked, and it is apparent that the daughter struggles with mental issues, the family should visit a psychiatrist.
A significant source of health concerns is the grandmother’s age-related issues. An appropriate questionnaire could help identify the sources of her distress and the need for screenings. Due to her age, the grandmother would benefit from early screenings and diagnosis of such issues as breast cancer, diabetes, coronary artery disease, and colorectal cancer (Carroll et al., 2017). Family history plays a crucial role in choosing the right screening, however, self-reported history might be inaccurate, and additional medical analysis is required (Carroll et al., 2017). Having proper medical records of family health history can also reveal any necessities for screenings for the rest of the Petersons family. Screening for blood pressure, sugar levels, and cancer can significantly decrease the strain on the family’s health insurance.
As Petersons show a relatively low number of health-related issues and have an established hierarchy, it would be appropriate to follow a public health model that promotes a healthy lifestyle. Think family approach is a set of principles that focus on enhancing and strengthening people’s health through family structural, contextual, and functional domains (Hanson et al., 2019). Hanson et al. (2019) state that “these principles include family engagement, family responsibility, family stability, and family diversity” (p. 4). By analyzing a family as a single unit, it is possible to improve the health of all its members by creating an environment that would promote healthy behavior and give them all the necessary tools to follow it (Hanson et al., 2019). The Petersons family has high stability, and its members are shown to understand their responsibilities in upholding their health status. This approach focuses on the interconnectedness of family members, which allows them to support each other in pursuit of well-being.
Petersons have several issues that can be addressed through this health model. They include increased emotional support for family members, higher engagement in physical activities and establishment of an exercise routine, and switching to a healthier diet. Think family focuses on creating a stable family whose members actively encourage each other to lead a healthy life (Hanson et al., 2019). It is crucial to understand that the health issues of one member affect an entire family and decrease its stability, both economical and social (Hanson et al., 2019). To promote healthy behavior, this program advises family practitioners to educate families on increasing their well-being as a whole, give them access to necessary resources, and respect their autonomy (Hanson et al., 2019). Meaningful communication can be achieved through periodic evaluations, self-reported questionnaires, and appointed family advisors.
In conclusion, the Petersons family has a strong potential for reducing and eliminating health issues that currently exist within it. By emphasizing mental health and age-related life complications, Petersons can ease life for their most vulnerable members in a short span. Moreover, by visiting diagnosticians and going through appropriate screenings, the family can identify additional issues, risk factors, and underlying causes, such as mental health or those related to family history. Think family approach can help Petersons in negating present problems, including inconsistent diet, emotional support, or the lack of physical engagement.
Adler, N. E., Glymour, M. M., & Fielding, J. (2016). Addressing social determinants of health and health inequalities. JAMA, 316(16), 1641. Web.
Carroll, J. C., Campbell-Scherer, D., Permaul, J. A., Myers, J., Manca, D. P., Meaney, C., Moineddin, R., & Grunfeld, E. (2017). Assessing family history of chronic disease in primary care: Prevalence, documentation, and appropriate screening. Canadian Family Physician (Medecin de Famille Canadien), 63(1), e58–e67.
Hanson, C. L., Crandall, A., Barnes, M. D., Magnusson, B., Novilla, M. L. B., & King, J. (2019). Family-focused public health: Supporting homes and families in policy and practice. Frontiers in Public Health, 7. Web.
Maurer, D., Raymond, T., & Davis, B. (2018). Depression: Screening and diagnosis. American Family Physician, 98(8), 508-515.
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