Comments on “The organization of pharmaceutical services by ‘health region’ in Brazil’s Unified Health System”

Suetônio Queiroz Araújo Karen Sarmento Costa Vera Lucia Luiza Carmen Lavras Eucilene Alves Santana Noemia Urruth Leão Tavares About the authors


This study aimed to describe and characterize the pharmaceutical services provided in Brazil’s Unified Health System (SUS) from the point of view of the healthcare networks that are organized by region in the QualiSUS-Rede Project. This was a cross-sectional study, with data collected from December 2013 to July 2015, in public health establishments that carried out delivery or warehousing of medications (n = 4,938), in 465 municipalites, and the Federal District, in 43‘Health Regions’. The results show the existence of at least one management service supporting the health network, and warehousing of medications in all the regions (> 90%). It also showed the availability of at least one healthcare service, in healthcare locations, by pharmaceutical professionals is irregular between the Regions, being highest in the Southeastern Region (74.3%), and lowest in the Northeastern Region (43.3%). The results underpine the need for effective structuring of pharmaceutical assistance in the SUS networks, overcoming the current restrictive vision of its activities, which gives value almost exclusively to the logistical component of support to the network, to the detriment of the clinical component. It is also important to expand, and improve the quality of, the population’s access to medical drugs, and improve the quality of the healthcare offered to users of the system.

Health systems; Regionalization; Pharmaceutical services

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