Learning Objective 1: 1.Describe the implications of identifying coping strategies of culturally diverse family members of psychiatric patients.
Learning Objective 2: 2.Develop strategies to help promote positive coping in families with mental illness.
Methods: In this exploratory research study, the coping strategies of 45 family members of hospitalized psychiatric patients were examined using a descriptive, correlational mixed method research approach. This study was guided by the Neuman Systems Model (Neuman, 1995) and using the Family Crisis Oriented Personal Evaluation Scales (F-COPES; McCubbin, Olson, & Larsen, 1991) and semi-structured interviews.
Results: This study found that these family members used more emotion-focused coping strategies than problem-focused coping strategies. The common coping strategies used by family members of hospitalized psychiatric patients were communicating with immediate family, acceptance of their situation, passive appraisal, avoidance, and spirituality.
Conclusion: Using the Neuman Systems Model to help understand the environmental forces that impact the client system will offer nurses insight into the family’s coping ability. By learning more about how culturally diverse families cope with mental illness, nurses will be able to provide interventions that support healthy family functioning. This understanding of how the family member of a psychiatric patient copes is essential in providing the best outcomes for the entire family.
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