Modern nursing professionals aim at delivering patient-centered care, which is rather difficult without understanding patients and their needs. The study of families assists nurses in achieving the mentioned goal. It is critical to identify the primary areas to consider when analyzing each patient’s family. Recent research shows that some of the most relevant aspects to pay attention to include socio-cultural, environmental, as well as features related to decision-making, power, role structure, and communication patterns. All these facets of family life have a considerable impact on the way patients evaluate and adhere to treatment plans, cope with stress, share their concerns with healthcare professionals, and make decisions.
Family nursing research contributes to the development of nursing practice since it sheds light on the concepts and domains mentioned above and provides theoretical frameworks that can be used as guidelines for nursing professionals. A nurse should be aware of the most effective approaches to family nursing that can be applied in different settings. In some cases, it can be beneficial to see families as systems, but it can also be necessary to employ the premises of structural-functional or family development theories. Nursing professionals should understand the way families evolve in order to develop the most appropriate communication patterns. Nursing practitioners should be in close contact with patients’ families in order to identify the most urgent needs of the patient and ways to meet them. Social support is one of the most potent instruments contributing to the effective healing process. Informed families provide comprehensive support while nurses elicit more details concerning patient profile that is instrumental in developing or shaping treatment plans.