Having chosen the title Family Medicine for our discipline, the question that naturally arises is “Exactly what and how much do we need to know about the families under our care?” To answer, we must first consider how the family affects the health of its individual members. The effect is mediated in several ways: through inheritance, through learned behaviors, or as a result of interactions between family members. In some cases all these factors may be operating; a person may be alcoholic because he has inherited a susceptibility to alcohol or because everyone in his family drinks or primarily because he has been rejected by his family. The family physician who is aware of family influences on health can be more effective in understanding and helping his patients.
KeywordsFamily Physician Rheumatic Fever Mother Lonely Inadequate Housing Marriage Relationship
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