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AFRICAN AMERICAN CASE STUDY #2

Mr. and Mrs. Evans are an African American couple who retired from the school system last year. Both are 65 years of age and reside on 20 acres of land in a large rural community approximately 5 miles from a Superfund site and 20 miles from two chemical plants. Their household consists of their two daughters, Anna, aged 40 years, and Dorothy, aged 42 years; their grandchildren, aged 25, 20, 19, and 18; and their 2- year-old great-grandson. Anna and Dorothy and their children all attended the university. Mr. Evans’s mother and three of his nieces and nephews live next door. Mr. Evans’s mother has brothers, sisters, other sons and daughters, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren who live across the road on 10 acres of land. Other immediate and extended family live on the 80 acres adjacent to Mr. Evans’s mother. All members of the Evans family own the land on which they live. Mrs. Evans has siblings and extended family living on 70 acres of land adjacent to Mr. Evans’s family, who live across the road. Mr. and Mrs. Evans also have family living in Chicago, Detroit, New York, San Francisco, and Houston. Once a year, the families come together for a reunion. Every other month, local family members come together for a social hour. The family believes in strict discipline with lots of love. It is common to see adult members of the family discipline the younger children, regardless of who the parents are. Mr. Evans has hypertension and diabetes. Mrs. Evans has hypertension. Both are on medication. Their daughter Dorothy is bipolar and is on medication. Within the last 5 years, Mr. Evans has had several relatives diagnosed with lung cancer and colon cancer. One of his maternal uncles died last year from lung cancer. Mrs. Evans has indicated on her driver’s license that she is an organ donor. Sources of income for Mr. and Mrs. Evans are their pensions from the school system and Social Security. Dorothy receives SSI because she is unable to work any longer. Mr. Evans and his brothers must assume responsibility for their mother’s medical bills and medication. Although she has Medicare parts A and B, many of her expenses are not covered. Mr. and Mrs. Evans, all members of their household, and all other extended family in the community attend a large Baptist church in the city. Several family members, including Mr. and Mrs. Evans, sing in the choir, are members of the usher board, teach Bible classes, and do community ministry.

Study Questions

1. Describe the organizational structure of this family and identify strengths and limitations of this family structure.

2. Describe and give examples of what you believe to be the family’s values about education.

3. Discuss this family’s views about child rearing.

4. Discuss the role that spirituality plays in this family.

5. Identify two religious or spiritual practices in which members of the Evans family may engage for treating hypertension, diabetes, and mental illness.

6. Identify and discuss cultural views that Dorothy and her parents may have about mental illness and medication.

7. To what extent are members of the Evans family at risk for illnesses associated with environmental hazards?

8. Susan has decided to become an organ donor. Describe how you think the Evans family will respond to her decision.

9. Discuss views that African Americans have about advanced directives.

10. Name two dietary health risks for African Americans.

11. Identify five characteristics to consider when assessing the skin of African Americans.

12. Describe two taboo views that African Americans may have about pregnancy.