Characteristics of the distribution of doctors in the Mais Médicos (More Doctors) Program in the states of Brazil's Northeast

Priscila Tamar Alves Nogueira Adriana Falangola Benjamin Bezerra Antonio Flaudiano Bem Leite Islândia Maria de Sousa Carvalho Rogério Fabiano Gonçalves Keila Silene de Brito-Silva About the authors

Abstract

Inequalities in access to health, reflecting shortages and inadequate geographical distribution of health professionals, have been indicated as a challenge for Brazil. This paper analyzes the geographical distribution of professionals of the Mais Médicos Program allocated in the Northeastern Region of Brazil, through a descriptive cross-sectional study. Secondary data provided by the Health Ministry were used, and thematic maps of distribution of doctors in the Region were prepared. Data on 4,716 doctors who became members of health teams in 1,294 municipalities in six Indigenous Health Districts in the years 2013 and 2014 were analyzed. The greater part of the municipalities of the Region received between one and five doctors. The municipalities most benefited had, at least, 20% of their population in extreme poverty. 99.9% of the doctors were allocated in a Health Center or Primary Healthcare Unit. The majority were women (57%), predominantly of the 45-49 age group (24%). In spite of the advances achieved by the Program – such as distribution of the doctors in locations with greater vulnerability – some States continue to have significant shortages of healthcare.

Key words
Brazilian Single Health System; Mais Médicos Program; Primary Healthcare

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