Hernandez Family Assessment Week 7
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.
Note: For guidance on writing a comprehensive client assessment, refer to pages 137–142 of Wheeler (2014) in this week’s Learning Resources.
Address in a comprehensive client assessment of the Hernandez family the following:
History or present illness
Past psychiatric history
Substance use history
Family psychiatric history
History of abuse and/or trauma
Review of systems
Mental status exam
JUAN HERNANDEZ: But we didn’t do anything wrong. That woman, that social worker, who came to our house, I told her, me and Elena, we decide what’s best for our boys, not her. Telling us we punish to hard. She doesn’t know anything about us.
ELENA HERNANDEZ: We give our sons a good life. We love them very much. It’s not fair what she said about Juan and me. We’re good parents.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Mrs. Hernandez, I understand how difficult this is for you–
JUAN HERNANDEZ: I don’t think you do. Everything that we do, we do for them, everything. We work hard. We take care of them. And when they don’t follow the rules, they get punished, strictly. The old fashioned way.
ELENA HERNANDEZ: Shh. Quiet. I told you.
JUAN HERNANDEZ: Sometimes I’m not strict enough with them. Look, I punish my sons the way I see fit. That’s the only way they are going to learn. That’s how we learned from our parents, right? Nobody took parenting classes. That’s ridiculous.
FEMALE SPEAKER: I understand you’re angry. And you’re raising your children the way you were brought up to do. But ACS has required that you do this.
JUAN HERNANDEZ: What if I don’t want to be required?
ELENA HERNANDEZ: I have a question.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Of course.
ELENA HERNANDEZ: If we go through with this, the things we talk about with you, will it be private? Hernandez Family Assessment Week 7
JUAN HERNANDEZ: But we have not agreed to do this.
ELENA HERNANDEZ: I don’t want to be here either. But I don’t want to loose our children. Would it be private, what we talk about?
FEMALE SPEAKER: The information we share is between us. The only exception to that is if one of you says you’re going to hurt yourself or hurt someone else. In that case, I have to report it to the ACS worker. But everything else is strictly confidential.
© 2017 Laureate Education, Inc. 1
Hernandez Family Episode 1
So how do you think we can work together to make this a positive experience for both of you?
JUAN HERNANDEZ: Parenting classes, really? What about the bills? I’m not going to be able to work overtime.
ELENA HERNANDEZ: If we do what we’re supposed to do, would it be OK with our family?
FEMALE SPEAKER: There are no guarantees. But here’s what I can say. We’ll all work together to create a plan based on what the ACS worker has required and recommended. Then it will be up to her what the outcome will be.
So shall we make a plan?
Hernandez Family Episode 1 Additional Content Attribution
Families play a crucial role in providing children with security, as well as paying attention to their needs. However, child welfare organizations may request for family assessment if they suspect that a particular family is engaging in child abuse or children are being mistreated. During the family assessment, the therapists collaborate with children’s welfare agencies in identifying the cause of child maltreatment. Consequently, the agencies can compel the family to undergo parenting classes to learn how to discipline children appropriately, in addition to assisting the family in coping with mental health challenges. This study will focus on the family assessment of the Hernandez family, in a case study scenario where Juan and Elena are accused of using abhorrent means of punishing their children.
Hernandez Family Assessment
The Hernandez family incorporates Juan, the husband, Elena, the wife, Juan Jr., and Alberto, their two sons. However, the family also incorporates Hector, Juan’s father, as well as Marie, Senta, and Rose, who are Juan’s younger sisters. Elena also indicated that she comes from a family of two brothers and three sisters, and her parents were still alive. Both Juan and Elena Hispanics.
Both Juan and Elena were accused by a social worker for being cruel in the way they were disciplining their two sons. Juan’s son had informed his teacher of the kind of punishment he received, who in turn reported to the social worker about the Hernandez family. The social worker, through the Administration for Children Services (ACS), visited the family and informed the couple to join a non-voluntary parenting class, which would enable them to learn how to discipline their children without causing mental harm to them.
History of Present Illness
The couple has not admitted being sick in recent times, and each seemed to be healthy and carrying out their responsibilities effectively. The children also appeared healthy, as they are seen playing with their toys when the social worker visited their home. Hernandez Family Assessment Week 7
Past Psychiatric History
No member of the family has a history of mental illness or ever visited a psychiatrist for the same. Additionally, the couple has not revealed whether any of them had ever tried to commit suicide or any other self-destructive behavior. However, the way the couple disciplines their children implies that they should visit a psychiatrist, who would evaluate their mental state.
Both Juan and Elena were not under any medication and appeared healthy and well-nourished. They did not reveal whether they had been under medication or hospitalized earlier in their lives. Neither did they indicate whether they are taking birth control pills or vitamin supplements. The children also appeared healthy, and their parents did not indicate whether they were taking any medication or have a history of medications.
Substance Use History
The couple does not seem to behave abnormally and has not admitted to using drugs or taking alcoholic drinks.
No developmental problem was noted in the Hernandez family, as the children are seen playing independently around with their toys. For optimal child development, an active engagement of adults is necessary to teach them acceptable behavior (Sege et al., 2018). The children seemed to respond well to their parents’ instructions.
Family Psychiatric History
The couple has never visited a psychiatrist, as they assumed that they were not acting above what is perceived as normal when dealing with their children’s behaviors. Despite receiving harsh punishment from their parents, the children do not depict signs of trauma or mental problems. Hernandez Family Assessment Week 7
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