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Revista Gaúcha de Enfermagem

On-line version ISSN 1983-1447


ALVES, Poliana Farias et al. Being autonomous: what do mental health services indicate?. Rev. Gaúcha Enferm. [online]. 2018, vol.39, e63993.  Epub July 23, 2018. ISSN 1983-1447.


To build qualitative outcome indicators in psychosocial care regarding autonomy from the perspective of users and their families.


This is an evaluative case study based on the dialectical hermeneutics theoretical framework, conducted at a mental health community service, in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. The first stage of data collection occurred between February and July 2014, and consisted of constructing indicators based on qualitative data analysis of the two evaluative studies conducted at this same service. The second stage, between August and September 2014, consisted of validating the indicators constructed through the focus groups with nine users and nine family members.


The users and relatives stated three qualitative indicators related to their autonomy resulting from their insertion in the service. The indicators were better self-management of income, improved everyday activities, and greater bargaining power.


The methodology proved appropriate to create qualitative indicators, from the perspective of the participants, and revealed that the service helps users achieve autonomy.

Keywords : Personal autonomy; Mental health; Evaluation; Qualitative research; Indicators.

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