Factors in Traditional Families which Affect Health and Health Care: A Qualitative Study

Ana Sanader, Dubravka Komić, Mirko Tandara, Maša Serec, Ivančica Pavličević, Katja Pesjak, Igor Švab


One of the most powerful influences on the patient is the family and its characteristics. In the recent decades families have changed, one of the most well known changes was a shift from extended to nuclear families. The consequences of this shift on health have been poorly researched, although family factors are being taught at medical schools. The aim of this study is to explore differences and similarities in factors between nuclear and extended families which may affect health and health care of family members. We conducted the qualitative study of family reports. The reports were done by students of family medicine. We examined the reports according to fourtheme:  1) Relations between the members of the family and between them and society, 2) Lifestyle, 3) Use of medical services and confidence in doctors and medicine, 4) llnesses and attitude towards illnesses. Differences were found in relations between the closest members of the family, close family interactions, domination issues and family roles, attitudes towards independence, parents and children, interaction with other people, attitude towards medicine, taking care of the sick member of the family and the way families endure illnesses. A quantitative research is needed to verify all the differences which we came across in this study. The qualitative data support the importance of family on health.


family medicin family functioning; education/undergraduate; family medicine

Full Text:


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.