Family Interventions across the Life Span

The significance of attending to the psychosocial impact of illness on individuals and family members is described in this entry as a means to alleviate psychosocial distress and perhaps to improve the medical condition. Critical issues are discussed, such as effective communication (including empathic effectiveness), the primacy of patients' mental representations of illness, and patients' coping abilities. Family health intervention researchers are still in the process of determining or refining intervention efforts to address the psychosocial impact of illness and to discover who might benefit from which type of intervention. Nonetheless, this entry provides some information or guidance for practice and for clinically relevant research. Much research is still needed to develop the foundational knowledge for family practice, though the preliminary results of this body ...

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