Thise article analyzes the role of the institutional supporters as individuals responsible for the conduction of public policies. Thus, it aims to understand the way in which institutional relationships are developed from the basis of the Brazilian State, through the establishment of relational dynamics among public agents, especially in the confrontation of complex issues regarding Brazilian federative relationships. The study was conducted at the General Coordination for Primary Health Care Management of the Primary Health Care Department of the Brazilian Ministry of Health. The research was based on qualitative epistemology, with the development of a documentary research, observation, in-depth interviews and focus groups between November 2015 and June 2017. The results enabled the identification of two structuring elements of the work of the supporters - ties to and knowledge of the territory -, which subsidize the development of a typology of the strategy of action developed and operated by the supporters, namely: application, adaptation, and cooperation. We concluded that the advancement in the implementation of the institutional support strategy was fundamentally made possible due to the relational and in-person dynamics among the individuals, and its results indicate concrete possibilities regarding the advancement in the guarantee of the right to health, in spite of the difficulties and contradictions that characterize Brazilian federalism.
primary health care; management in health; organization and administration; federalism; bureaucracy