NEW JOURNAL EDITOR
Finding the family voice
The incoming editors of Families, Systems, & Health plan to strengthen the
journal’s content on how family fits in to health care.
BY JAMIE CHAMBERLIN • Monitor staff
A patient grappling with a diabetes diagnosis might get first-rate guidance on utrition and lifestyle changes from her
physician, nutritionist and psychologist team, but
that might not be enough, says family therapist
Larry Mauksch, of the University of Washington.
“If the person who is doing most of the cooking
at home isn’t also on board, it’s all a bit of a sand
hill,” says Mauksch. Spouses, children and other
family members often play a crucial — and
sometimes overlooked — role in a patient’s care.
To promote such all-in-the-family
involvement, Mauksch and Colleen Fogarty, MD,
MSc, are seeking more articles on ways to work
more effectively with families as the incoming
co-editors of Families, Systems, & Health, a
multidisciplinary journal that attracts readers
and contributors from all corners of medical and
mental health care. The two officially take the
reins of the journal in September.
“The journal historically has been successful
in talking about systems design and health, but
getting the family focus in there has been harder
because there are lots of barriers to family involvement,” says
Mauksch. Those barriers include the difficulty of scheduling
appointments that bring family members together with a
patient’s health-care teams, he says.
Both editors come to the journal from the front lines of
primary care. Fogarty is a family physician at Anthony L.
Jordan/Brown Square Community Health Center in Rochester,
N. Y., trained in biostatistics and epidemiology. She is also
an associate professor in the department of family medicine
at the University of Rochester Medical Center. Mauksch is a
family therapist and senior lecturer in the department of family
medicine at the University of Washington, who has worked
alongside primary-care physicians for more than 30 years. He
specializes in teaching health-care professionals
how to communicate with patients, manage their
time and recognize the signs of mental illness.
Submit a manuscript to Families, Systems, & Health at www.