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Chinese family management of chronic childhood conditions: A cluster analysis


  • Acknowledgements

    The author would like to thank Professor Kathleen A. Knafl for critically reviewing the manuscript, and Professor George J. Knafl for substantial assistance with data analysis. The author would also thank Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) and the International Network for Doctoral Education in Nursing (INDEN) for supporting this postdoctoral training program and providing this opportunity to work with Professor Knafl.

    Disclosure: The authors report no actual or potential conflicts of interest.

  • Funding statement: This research was supported by a grant from Nursing Doctoral Education Project Foundation of China Medical Board (Fund code: CMB04-797), a grant from innovation program of Shanghai Municipal Educational Commission (Fund code: 12YS029), Shanghai Key Discipline Construction Project, and from Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine (Fund code: YZ1016 and JYh1008).



This study compared the management of chronic childhood conditions in Chinese families and identified predictors of management style.

Design and Method

A survey was conducted in 2008–2009 on a convenience sample of 387 caregivers of children with chronic conditions.


Six family management styles (FMSs) were identified: accomplished, uncertain managing, joint managing, managing with difficulty, struggling, and competent managing. The FMSs were related to the functioning of the family and the child. Changes in parents' employment, geographic location, and diagnosis predicted family placement in a cluster.

Practice Implications

Understanding Chinese FMSs will further aid in providing culturally appropriate family-centered care. Awareness of the predictors of FMSs can assist nurses in detecting which families need more help.