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The Brazilian Health Care System Essay

2234 words - 9 pages

The Brazilian Health Care System
Health care in Brazil became a major issue between the years 1985-1988 (Nascimento, 2013). The citizens took notice that a large gap between health care services provided to the wealthy and services provided to the rest of the population existed. Health care in Brazil became a right to all citizens in 1988 and the Sistema Unico de Saude- SUS (Unified Health Care System) was established (Nascimento, 2013). Citizens are able to purchase private insurance provided that they can afford it. The Brazilian health care system is funded by the government through social security, taxes, and those employed by the government. This system was instituted during a time in ...view middle of the document...

Brazil has the highest proportion of households that spend more than 40% on of their household budget on health care in Latin America. Households that have one or more elderly people residing in the home are more likely to have excessive costs regarding health care.
Quality of Care
The government of Brazil focuses primarily on primary care. Private institutions comprise a majority of secondary and tertiary care. There is a lack of specialized care. Unlike the United States where there are plenty of specialists but a lack of primary care physicians. In 2011, primary care visits accounted for 48 percent of appointments. Appointments with specialists consist of only 18 percent of visits (Nascimento, 2013). In 2010, the SUS contained over 41,000 health posts and centers, 30,000 specialized outpatient services, 2,000 public hospitals, and 236,000 community health agents (Macinko & Lima-Costa, 2012).
Brazil invests little in medical research which makes it difficult to discover new treatments and technologies. On the other hand, the United States is known for their medical treatments and technological advances. Even though everyone has the right to health care services in Brazil the quality of services may be inadequate. In Brazil, poor members of the population are hospitalized more often which may signify that the poor do not have access to some preventive services (Macinko & Lima-Costa, 2012).
Women and maternal women child health
The women’s and maternal children’s health has improved overtime in Brazil. Access to maternal women child health is widespread and nearly universal coverage. Inequalities in access in rural areas and poorer populations has decreased dramatically. Infant mortality rates have reduced significantly. Infant mortality rates decreased by 5% a year in the 1980s and 1990s, and by 4% a year since 2000 (Victora, Aquino, Leal, Monteiro, Barros, & Szwarcwald, 2011). By 2008, 20 deaths occurred for every 1000 live births deaths (Victoria, et. al., 2011). Leading causes of death in 2007 were injuries, respiratory infections, and other infectious diseases. (Victoria, et. al., 2011). Stunting growth among children younger than 5 decreased from 37% in 1975 to 7% in 2007 (Victoria, et. al., 2011). Deaths are higher in the poorest populations when compared to the wealthier populations. There is a difference in mortality rate between ethnic groups as well. Mortality rates are greater among the black population than the white population. Mortality ratios for pregnant women have decreased during the past 10 years by 4% (Victoria, et. al., 2011). In 2002, the estimated mortality rate was 54 women per 100 000.These rates varied greatly between the south region and the north region. 42 deaths occurred per 100,000 women in the south. 73 deaths occurred per 100,000 in the northeast (Victoria, et. al., 2011). A majority of maternal deaths in Brazil in 2007 were caused by hypertensive disorders, sepsis, hemorrhage, and complications of abortion...

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