Family Resources

  • David E. Swee


Before the modern era of family migration and separation, it would have seemed unnecessary to discuss the use of the family as a resource in medical care. There was no other resource. This was due to the natural fidelity of the family and its sense of common purpose in a hostile world, and also to the lack of other sources of support. There were few social agencies, governmental welfare programs, or even private services that an individual could turn to in a time of need. Moreover, both individual and family pride would have prohibited acceptance of such “outside” assistance. Instead, when a family member fell ill, the physician naturally called on the family for physical, emotional, spiritual, and financial support of the ill individual. Today, family physicians are rediscovering the family as a resource in medical care. The questions they are asking themselves are: why use the family, can the family really make a difference, how can I identify family resources, how do I utilize family resources, and what are the implications of using the family as a resource?


Family Physician Family Functioning Family Resource Family Life Cycle Primary Care Giver 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Schmidt DD: The family as the unit of medical care. J Fam Prac 7:303–313, 1978. 22.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Litman TJ: The family as a basic unit in health and medical care: a social behavioral overview. Soc Sci Med 8:495–519, 1974. 23.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Parsons T, Fox R: Illness, therapy and the modern urban family. J Soc Issues 8:31–44, 1952. 24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Cobb S: Social support as a moderator of life stress. Psychosom Med 38: 300–314, 1976.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Bruhn JG: Effects of chronic illness on the family. J 25. Fam Pract 4: 1057–1060, 1977.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Steidl JH, Finkelstein FO, Wexler JP, et al.: Medical condition, adherence to treatment regimens, and family 26. functioning. Gen Psychiat 37: 1025–1027, 1980.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Brackney BE: The impact of home hemodialysis on the marital dyad. J Mar Fam Ther 5:55–60, 1979. 27.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Litman TJ: The family and physical rehabilitation. J Chron Dis 19: 211–217, 1966.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Smith RT: Disability and the recovery process: role of social networks. In: Jaco EG (ed.) Patients, Physicians, and Illness: A Sourcebook in Behavioral Science and 28. Health. New York, Macmillan, 1979, pp. 218–226.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Finlayson A: Social networks as coping resources; lay 29. help and consultation patterns used by women in husbands’ post-infarction career. Soc Sci Med 10: 97–103, 1976.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Doehrman SR: Psycho-social aspects of recovery from coronary heart disease: a review. Soc Sci Med 11: 199–30. 218, 1977.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Horwitz A: Family, kin, and friend networks in psychiatric help-seeking. Soc Sci Med 12: 297–304, 1978.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Eaton WW: Life events, social supports, and psychiatric 31. symptoms: a re-analysis of the New Haven data. J Health Soc Behav 19: 230–234, 1978.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Liebman R, Minuchin S, Baker L: The use of structural 32. family therapy in the treatment of intractable asthma. Am Psychiat 131: 535–540, 1974.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Venters M: Familial coping with chronic and severe 33. childhood illness: the case of cystic fibrosis. Soc Sci Med 15A: 289–297, 1981. 34.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Stanton MD: Family treatment approaches to drug abuse problems: a review. Fam Proc 18: 251–280, 1979.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Moos RH, Bromet E, Tsu V, Moos B: Family characteristics and the outcome of treatment for alcoholism. J 35. Stud Alcohol 40: 78–88, 1979.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Meyer RJ, Haggerty RJ, Lombardi N, Perkins R: Streptococcal infections in families: factors altering individ- 36. ual susceptibility. Pediatrics 29: 539–549, 1962.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Boyce WT, Jensen EW, Cassel JC, Collier AM, Smith 37. AH, Ramey CT: Influence of life events and family routines on childhood respiratory tract illness. Pediatrics 38. 60: 609–615, 1977.Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Gore S: The effect of social support in moderating the health consequences of unemployment. J Health Soc Behav 19: 157–165, 1978.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Snyder AI: Periodic marital separation and physical illness. Am J Orthopsychiat 48: 637–643, 1978.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Mechanic D: The influence of mothers on their children’s health attitudes and behavior. Pediatrics 33: 444–453, 1964.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Pratt L: Family Structure and Effective Health Behavior: The Energized Family. Boston, Houghton Mifflin, 1976.Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    McGreehan DM, Warburton SW: How to help families cope with caring for elderly members. Geriatrics 33: 99–106, 1978.Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Tyroler HA, Johnson AL, Fulton JT: Patterns of preventive health behavior in populations. J Health Hum Be-hay 6: 128–140, 1965.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Osterweis M, Bush PJ, Zuckerman AE: Family context as a predictor of individual medicine use. Soc Sci Med 13A: 287–291, 1979.Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Stuart MR, Snope FC: Family structure, family dynamics, and the elderly. In: Somers AR, Fabian DR (eds.) The Geriatric Imperative: An Introduction to Gerontology and Clinical Geriatrics. New York, Appleton-Century-Crofts, 1981, pp. 137–152.Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Shapiro J: Development of family self-control skills. J Fam Pract 12: 67–73, 1981.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Hoebel FC: Coronary artery disease and family interaction: a study of risk factor modification. In: Watzlawick P, Weakland JH (eds.) The Interactional View: Studies at the Mental Research Institute, Palo Alto, 1965–1974. New York, WW Norton & Co., 1977, pp. 363–374.Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Gorton TA, Doerfler DL, Hulka BS, Tyroler HA: Intra-familial patterns of illness reports and physician visits in a community sample. J Health Soc Behav 20: 37–44, 1979.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Rayner JF: Socioeconomic status and factors influencing the dental health practices of mothers. Am J Patient Health 60: 1250–1258, 1970.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Tuthill SW, Reehlmann DO: Predischarge conference in a family medicine residency program. Can Fam Physician 27: 153–156, 1981.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Hollingsworth CE, Sokol B: Predischarge family conference. JAMA 239: 740–741, 1978.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Packwood T: Supporting the family: a study of the organisation and implications of hospital provision of holiday relief for families caring for dependants at home. Soc Sci Med 14A: 613–620, 1980.Google Scholar
  35. 35.
    Barnes RF, Raskind MA, Scott M, Murphy C: Problems of families caring for Alzheimer patients: use of a support group. J Am Geriat Soc 29: 80–85, 1981.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Safford F: A program for families of the mentally impaired elderly. Gerontologist 20: 656–660, 1980.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. 37.
    Bryer KB: The Amish way of death: a study of family support systems. Am Psychologist 34: 255–261, 1979.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Elting R, Whittemore R, Green M: Patient participation in a pediatric program. Am J Pub Health 43: 183–191, 1953.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • David E. Swee

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations