The majority of demands for drugs that have led to legal proceedings could be avoided if two SUS directives were followed, namely the organization of oncology services and the observance of reporting on essential medicines. Failure to do so causes a breakdown in the National Drug Policy, in equality of access and in the rational use of drugs within the National Health System.
Medicines are considered the main therapeutical tool for the treatment or maintenance of public health conditions. However, the symbolism in wich they are cloaked and thus their use by society, has contributed to the emergence of many adverse events with high impact on health and health systems costs. Thus, rational drug use promotion is an important tool to eliminate or minimize the problem. This is where the pharmacists can play an important role because this is a pertinent subject in their field of performance. Their participation in multidisciplinary teams adds value to health services and contributes to health promotion. This article addresses these issues and how pharmacists can contribute to health promotion.
This article deals with the organization of pharmaceutical assistance within the Brazilian Public Unified Health System (Sistema Unico de Saúde, SUS) by analyzing the progress made so far and the challenges that still must be faced to ensure the right to universal therapeutic and pharmaceutical coverage in Brazil. Among the improvements, the article discusses the National List of Essential Drugs and its role to guide the supply, prescription, and dispensing of drugs within SUS. The structure of federal funding and the existing pharmaceutical programs are described, as well as the responsibilities of the Federal Government, states, and municipalities concerning allocation of financial resources. Despite the progress made, the model of access to SUS drugs has not been successful in securing universal therapeutic assistance. It is essential to consider a type of funding and organization of pharmaceutical assistance that is driven by a notion of regionalization, with financing based on health care flows rather than on the population circumscribed to a given territory. It is also essential to qualify pharmaceutical management by hiring pharmacists and support personnel, professionalizing workers, and setting up facilities with appropriate information systems and equipment.
The goals of Brazil's national drug and pharmaceutical assistance policies are far from being met. Quality pharmaceutical services must again be included on the agenda at all three government levels since it is impossible to have effective health care without quality pharmaceutical services.
INTRODUÇÃOQ uando se discutem políticas de saúde no Brasil de hoje, não se podem ignorar os arts. 6 o e 196 da Constituição Federal de 1988, que reconhecem a saúde como direito fundamental das pessoas e dever do Estado. Um assunto que até 1988 era primordialmente técnico e políti-co passou a ser também jurídico e de ordem constitucional.As implicações dessa "juridicização constitucional" das políticas de saúde estão longe de ser triviais. De um lado, tal "juridicização" impõe aos técnicos em saúde pública princípios e limites legais que antes não estavam presentes ou, quando estavam, não se revestiam da força de normas constitucionais. De outro, traz ao seio do mundo jurídico uma das mais complexas áreas de políticas públicas do Estado moderno. Não seria realista esperar que esse embate entre duas áreas técnicas distintas, que operam com conceitos e modelos de racionalidade significativamente diversos, se desse sem maiores choques e conflitos.A partir do fim da década de 1990, os problemas latentes dessa união inusitada vêm aflorando em milhares de ações judiciais espalhadas pelo país, centenas delas culminando na mais alta corte, o Supremo Tribunal Federal. Percebe-se, nessas ações, um claro descompasso entre o que o Poder Judiciário e o que os técnicos em saúde do Estado vêm
The article analyzes the implications of the austerity policy in Brazil on the guarantee of universal social rights, focusing on the financing of the Unified Health System (SUS) and the right to health. The effects of the Brazilian austerity policy are analyzed in an international perspective, based on evidence produced in different contexts, identified from a literature review, in order to base the arguments developed in the article. Information on the fiscal austerity measures being implemented in Brazil is presented and its likely impacts on social protection in the country are analyzed in a context of significant economic recession. The austerity policy adopted in Brazil is not universal, since it does not affect all Brazilian society equally, nor does it have temporary effects, since it is not focused on reducing the momentary imbalance in public accounts. Its main objective is to promote the reduction of the size of the Brazilian State. Finally, we show alternative paths to the fiscal austerity policy that has been used to tackle the economic crisis. The authors argue by a national development project that is necessarily linked to social protection for the universe of citizens and based on values of solidarity.
The paper refl ects upon the legal interpretations of the right to health and its consequences. In order to exemplify the complexity of the theme and its emotional appeal, it analyzes the Supreme Court's decision in a public litigation against the State of Alagoas demanding that medication be supplied. Different interpretations, by both judges and health professionals, of the notion of integral health care, one of the principles of Brazil's Health System, are examined. It is held that scarcity of resources must be taken into consideration when drawing up public policies that aim to allocate funding effi ciently and in a manner that is compatible with the principals of the health system. Finally, the impact of judicial decisions concerning medication not offered by the system and the behavior of the Brazilian judiciary with this respect are discussed.
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