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Life Span: Care Coordination for Chronic Illness/Disabilities and the Family

  • By: Sally E. Thorne
  • In: Encyclopedia of Family Health
  • Edited by: Martha Craft-Rosenberg & Shelley-Rae Pehler
  • Subject:Family Health, Family Policy, Family Law

Chronic illness and disability are broad conceptual terms referring to a wide range of ongoing and complex health and human capacity conditions. Common to most chronic diseases or disabling conditions is the requirement for a dynamic and evolving array of family decisions and actions toward managing the effects of the condition so that the affected member can achieve the best possible level of health and functional ability across the life span. Care coordination in the family context involves both self-care management of the condition and also navigating systems of formal resources needed to access professional care, organize supportive services, and optimize health despite the condition. This entry reviews what is known about the family experience of having a member with a chronic or disabling condition, ...

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