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Physis: Revista de Saúde Coletiva

Print version ISSN 0103-7331On-line version ISSN 1809-4481


CANDIDO, LAISE CORDEIRO; FINKLER, MIRELLE; BASTOS, JOÃO LUIZ  and  FREITAS, SÉRGIO FERNANDO TORRES DE. Conflicts with the patient, race and conceptions held by Dental students: The case of undergraduates from Southern Brazil. Physis [online]. 2019, vol.29, n.4, e290410.  Epub Nov 25, 2019. ISSN 1809-4481.

The socio-historical processes that occurred in Brazil resulted in health inequalities between different ethnic and racial groups. This study aimed to assess whether the conceptions held by Dental students vary according to the patient’s race, when a hypothetic patient disagrees with the proposed treatment, as well as when the treatment fails. Data were collected with a self-completed questionnaire, which was administered to 166 undergraduate students living in Southern Brazil. The questionnaire was presented with a hypothetical clinical scenario on two different occasions; in the first one, the patient was black and, in the second one, white. On both occasions, the case asked about treatment decisions of a similarly affected tooth, after which the respondent had to answer some open-ended items. The answers were analyzed with Thematic Content Analysis. Results suggest a less respectful behavior towards and less autonomy given to the black patient, as compared with the white one. Black patients were also more responsible for treatment failures as compared to their white peers. Based on these results, we suggest that the training of health professionals should focus on the issue of racial inequalities, to better equip them to build a less unequal society.

Keywords : health services; professional education; higher education; oral health.

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