How families manage chronic conditions: An analysis of the concept of normalization

  • Knafl K
  • Deatrick J
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Abstract

Concept analysis entails the systematic examination of the attributes or characteristics of a given concept for the purpose of clarifying the meaning of that concept. The term "normalization" appears frequently in reports of how families respond to the illness or disability of a member. While most authors agree that families who have an ill or disabled member attempt to normalize their family life, definitions and applications of the concept vary considerably across investigators. Following guidelines for concept analysis proposed by Chinn and Jacobs (1983), the origin and development of the concept normalization are traced and criteria are presented for distinguishing between normalization and other responses families make to a member's illness or disability. Three case examples are presented: a model (normalization) case, a contrary (disassociation) case, and a related (denial) case.

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Authors

  • Kathleen A. Knafl

  • Janet A. Deatrick

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