High Risk Family Assessment and Health Promotion

High risk families are those families facing higher than the expected risk for developing a stated disease or injury associated with their habits, life style, socio-economic conditions and environment. Assessment of health needs is a fundamental skill in nursing. It is vital to perform family assessment especially when working with high risk groups and individuals. Unfortunately, many nurses usually associate the process of assessment to an individual patient been cared for and fail in assessing and addressing the needs of the whole family.

Family violence is a high risk condition suffered by many families in the United States of America. Family violence is the most popular and violent crime in USA which includes sexual, physical, emotional and economic abuse. Violence in many families is enhanced through the acknowledgment that the distinct violence types are not distinct in the victim’s lives. Most victims of child abuse in USA are highly exposed to sibling, community and parental violence. Children who are raised from violent homes are likely to repeat these family patterns by becoming abusers. As a high risk condition, family violence highly drains the economy as it is the start of alcoholism, homelessness, violent crimes and drug addiction.

Children, individuals and groups who have gone through the experience of family violence end up experiencing severe trauma, others even develop signs and symptoms of post-traumatic stress, low esteem, poor impulse control, depression, stress and the feelings of powerlessness. These individuals are at a high risk of drug use and alcohol hence the need for the nurses to perform a family assessment as this will help them understand the root of all the sufferings. The individuals are at high risk of fear, suicide, isolation and running away from home. Many of these individuals feel that their lives and those of others are in imminent danger in which they do not have any control over.

It is important for the nurses to apply the relevant models and theories which are applicable to the family and the patient and identify those health objectives which are related to this high risk group of people. After this is done, the nurses should come up with intervention strategies which should be based on health promotion and prevention in order to deal with the individuals facing or those who have experienced family violence. The intervention strategies developed will depend on the type of family violence which the individual has gone through.

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