This paper is an integrative review analyzing the scientific production and legal documents regarding public policies for the elderly in Brazil. Research was conducted in the Virtual Health Library and Scopus databases, examining publications since 2003. Data were collected from June to September of 2011 using the following key words: "elderly" (idosos), "public policies" (políticas públicas), "elderly person" (pessoa idosa), "aging" (envelhecimento) and "civic participation" (participação cidadã). The search resulted in the selection of 15 articles and six legal documents targeted at the elderly in Brazil that were submitted to content analysis by categorization. The results revealed that aging in Brazil has occurred in the midst of adaptations entrenched in cultural biases, social, economic and educational discrepancies and the implementation of public welfare policies. There were few studies that indicated the importance of strengthening social movements that elicit discussion related to the elderly in Brazil. The conclusion reached is that the study will provide material for reflection about the construction of a new reality about aging in Brazil.
Aging; Public policy; Civic participation