The California Family Health Project: VII. Summary and Integration of Findings

Authors

  • LAWRENCE FISHER Ph.D.,

    1. Center for the Study of the Family and Health, Department of Family and Community Medicine (AC-9), University of California, San Francisco, Box 0900, San Francisco CA 94143.
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  • DONALD C. RANSOM Ph.D.,

    1. Center for the Study of the Family and Health, Department of Family and Community Medicine (AC-9), University of California, San Francisco, Box 0900, San Francisco CA 94143.
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  • HOWARD E. TERRY M.A.

    1. Center for the Study of the Family and Health, Department of Family and Community Medicine (AC-9), University of California, San Francisco, Box 0900, San Francisco CA 94143.
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  • This research is supported by NIMH Grant # 38468. Appreciation is expressed to Ronald Kokes, Ph.D., for his major contributions at an earlier stage of this research. Further, we thank the reviewers of earlier versions of the seven articles in this series for their thoughtful and constructive comments. We are especially grateful to Dr. Peter Steinglass, Editor of Family Process, for providing us with the opportunity to publish this research as an integrated series of reports.

Abstract

In a series of reports, we have observed the relationships between four domains of family life (World View, Emotion Management, Structure/Organization, Problem Solving), and the health of husbands and wives in a community-based sample of 225 families. In this final article of the series, we provide an overview and summary of the results, by gender, including the structure and patterning of variables both within each family domain and among all four family domains analyzed together. In addition, we review the associations between each family domain and adult health (unidomain analyses), and among all four family domains taken together and adult health (multidomain analyses). Prominent differences in family and health relationships based on gender are described from the perspective of socially and culturally supported sex-role expectations and behavior. The results support the use of a multidimensional family assessment framework in health research that can lead to the further development of empirically based models of family process.

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