ESSAY: Assignment 1: Hernandez Family Assessment

Assessment is as essential to family therapy as it is to individual therapy. Although families often present with one person identified as the “problem,” the assessment process will help you better understand family roles and determine whether the identified problem client is, in fact, the root of the family’s issues. As you examine the Hernandez Family: Sessions 1-6 videos in this week’s Learning Resources, consider how you might assess and treat the client family.
Review this week’s Learning Resources and reflect on the insights they provide on family assessment.
View the Hernandez Family: Sessions 1-6 videos, and consider how you might assess the family in the case study.
The Assignment
Address in a comprehensive client assessment of the Hernandez family the following:

Demographic information
Presenting problem
History or present illness
Past psychiatric history
Medical history
Substance use history
Developmental history
Family psychiatric history
Psychosocial history
History of abuse and/or trauma
Review of systems
Physical assessment
Mental status exam
Differential diagnosis
Case formulation
Treatment plan


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Hernandez Family Assessment

An individual’s personality is a result of combined patterns that impact his or her thoughts, behaviours, emotions, and motivations (Gehring, Debry & Smith, 2013). Among the many underlying factors of these patterns is the family. This assertion is attributed to the fact that it is the smallest unit in the human social context. As a result, it operates within larger groups such as the community and society at large. As claimed by Gehring, Debry and Smith (2013), families are contingent on change because members interact with other non-family members as they grow older.

However, it is not always the case that families change. Some families are made distinct by regress and deterioration. In such instances, family members present symptoms of behavioural and psychological health problems. Therefore, it is the psychologists’ role to check up on families and how their members relate with one another (Wright & Leahey, 2012). In so doing, they can determine the dysfunctions affecting the families and the most suitable solutions for them. In this paper, I discuss the Hernandez family through a comprehensive psychiatric family assessment.

Demographic Information

The Hernandez family is of Hispanic descent. It comprises of a father Juan, mother Elena and their two children, Alberto and Juan Jr. Alberto is 6-years old while Juan Jr is 8-years old. A thorough analysis of the family reveals that its members love and care deeply for one another.

Presenting the Problem

An ACS worker has determined that Elena and Juan use corporal punishment when responding to their children’s undesirable behaviours. Corporal forms of punishment are used with the intention of causing physical pain (Drotar, 2014). They include spanking, flogging, and caning. In this case, Elena and Juan would punish the children by making them kneel while holding encyclopedia up. According to the ASC worker, this form of punishment is abusive reason why she recommended that they sign up for parenting classes. Even though they maintain that this form of punishment was right, they did not wish to be separated from their children. For this reason, they agreed to sign up and learn the most suitable parenting approaches for their family.

History of Present Illness

Juan claims that he has no history with drug or substance abuse. However, he does state that he had a history of petty theft as a child. His juvenile petty theft record was effaced in 2010. Elena, on the other hand, is said …

Medical History It can be argued that the Hernandez family’s medical history suffers as a result of the parents’ busy work schedules. For this reason, they are unable to attend the parenting classes as much as they should. Also, these schedules prevent them from attending regular health check-ups. The children attend medical check-ups only when health disorders arise. These disorders are most likely the result of the family’s increasing health-related risks…

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