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Cadernos de Saúde Pública

versão impressa ISSN 0102-311Xversão On-line ISSN 1678-4464

Resumo

VILLELA, Marcos Marreiro; SOUZA, Janice Maria Borba de; MELO, Vicente de Paula  e  DIAS, João Carlos Pinto. Chagas disease epidemiological surveillance in a decentralized program: evaluation of practice and knowledge among municipal health agents in an endemic region of Minas Gerais State, Brazil. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2007, vol.23, n.10, pp.2428-2438. ISSN 0102-311X.  https://doi.org/10.1590/S0102-311X2007001000018.

This study aimed to evaluate the epidemiological surveillance of Chagas disease in the central-western region of Minas Gerais State, Brazil, based on knowledge and practice among municipal health agents working in the Chagas Disease Control Program. Thirty-five municipalities (counties) were visited, with meetings and application of a questionnaire on knowledge, practice, and difficulties in conducting the surveillance work. Twenty-six agents were on temporary (annual) contracts, and only two had job stability. 77.1% of the agents commented that the local population had difficulty identifying the vector insects (triatomines). Twenty-three employees stated that the municipal governments provided adequate conditions for conducting the surveillance program, although 27 made suggestions, particularly requesting more educational materials, better wages, and greater appreciation of their work by the municipal governments. Such suggestions are crucial to the consolidation of the program's results.

Palavras-chave : Chagas Disease; Epidemiologic Surveillance; National Health Programs; Decentralization.

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