Daily activities by community health workers in the Family Health Program in Porto Alegre, Brazil

This research aimed to study the daily work of the communitarian health agent (CHA) in the Family Health Program (FHP) of Porto Alegre. The outline used was the series of cases, being the population under studies composed by 114 CHAs and 46 FHP professionals of the teams. The teams that had participated in this stage of the research had been selected in a stratified sampling of about 50% of the services of the FHP in each Sanitary District of Porto Alegre. The data collecting happened through half-structuralized questionnaires and the technique of the focal group. The main activity of the communitarian health agent is the home visit, mentioned by 2/3 of the professionals. The health education is the second most developed one done by agents. Another activity of the agent is the support work to the teams, assisting in the reception of patients, handbook searches; phoning and organization and control of the warehouse. Despite of being the communitarian agent's main activity, the home visits weren't carried through with total effectiveness, once part of its time is dedicated to the administrative activities - not fitting, then, with its role. Moreover, the schedule designed for the visits is not adjusted to the local reality. The study shows strategies to maximize the agent's work potential in the FHP in Porto Alegre.

Communitarian Health Agent; Family Health Program; Daily activities

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