Oral health ethical problems in the context of Primary Health Care

DORIS GOMES ELMA LOURDES CAMPOS ZOBOLI MIRELE FINKLER About the authors

Abstract

In view of the absence of studies focusing on ethical issues experienced by oral health professionals in the context of Primary Health Care (APS) and as the first stage of adaptation with validation of the Inventory of Ethical Problems in Primary Health Care (IPE-APS) for the oral health, this research aimed to disclose ethical problems that occur in work relationships and in oral care production. Interviews were conducted with dentistry professionals within the Family Health Strategy model, in traditional APS or unique arrangements. Data was collected and qualitatively analyzed in light of an amplified clinical Bioethics and other theoretical frameworks of the Brazilian Social Bioethics. The results revealed 32 ethical-political problems in different spheres: access and reception, management, relationships with users, intra- and inter-teams relationships, relations among different network levels, and in macro-structural processes, leaving little limits for transforming everyday problems into ethical ones. These problems, most of which are of technical, administrative or structural nature, involving material, financial and organizational issues, have an ethical and a political dimension, as they influence the ways of living, working and producing care.

Keywords:
dentistry; oral health; primary health care; bioethics; ethics

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