Social representations of municipal counselors regarding social control in health in the Brazilian Unified Health System (SUS)

This study seeks to analyze the social representations of municipal health counselors regarding social control in health. Sixty interviews were conducted with counselors of nineteen counties within the Integrated Federal District Region and Surrounding Areas (RIDE-DF). Data analysis was conducted with the use of French Alceste software, which included two thematic groups. The first dealt with the weaknesses of health councils, consisting of four categories: limitations in decision-making powers, bureaucratization of everyday practices, weaknesses in social participation and limitations in the practice of representation. The second dealt with the health system in RIDE-DF, consisting of only one category that expresses the precarious organization of health care in RIDE-DF. Social representation of social control, with a focus on social participation appears to be constrained by a ritual, namely the bureaucratization of policies and practices in the councils. This form of hierarchical and bureaucratic organization and operation of the council, based on a centralizing management model, has distanced the counselors from discussing health needs geared to the construction of public Health Projects.

Health counseling; Social control; Participative management; Democracy

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