Managing the Family's Health: Preferences and Experiences of Women with Different Work and Family Arrangements Academic Article uri icon


  • Balancing the needs of work and family is a subject of much debate. The purpose of this research was to explore how families manage their children's health within the context of different work and family arrangements. In-depth interviews were conducted with women who were at home full time (8) or in paid work over 30 hours a week (7). Women had at least one child under five years of age. Findings revealed there was no simple relationship between women's working arrangements and how they managed their children's health. All women, irrespective of their working arrangements, held similar preferences for managing their children's health. However, most women experienced either time or financial constraints that meant they had to compromise their original preferences. In some cases this meant children missed out on receiving health services. Workplace support, extended family support and general satisfaction with work and family arrangements appeared to be important factors for the small number of women who had no problems in managing their children's health. The implications of these findings are discussed.

publication date

  • 2006