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Family Self-Management

  • By: Kathleen J. Sawin & Polly Ryan
  • In: Encyclopedia of Family Health
  • Edited by: Martha Craft-Rosenberg & Shelley-Rae Pehler
  • Subject:Family Health, Family Policy, Family Law

Families are assuming increasing responsibility to manage their own and their family members' chronic conditions, prevent or delay the onset of secondary conditions, and actively engage in lifestyles that foster health. To effect the achievement of improved outcomes, health care providers need to better understand the escalating demands placed on individuals and families to self-manage, develop sensitive measures of the dimensions of self-management, and identify strategies that optimize individual and family self-management behaviors. After providing a brief background, this entry defines self-management and its common uses and discusses self-management theory and outcome measures.


Individuals and families take responsibility for self-management of chronic conditions or for implementing healthy behaviors by intentionally performing a group of learned behaviors. Historically, individual and family self-management have been studied as separate ...

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