Primary Care and Children's Mental Health in Brazil

Primary Care and Children's Mental Health in Brazil

Author Paula, Cristiane Silvestre de Autor UNIFESP Google Scholar
Nakamura, Eunice Autor UNIFESP Google Scholar
Wissow, Lawrence Google Scholar
Bordin, Isabel Altenfelder Santos Autor UNIFESP Google Scholar
Nascimento, Rosimeire do Autor UNIFESP Google Scholar
Leite, Álvaro Jorge Madeiro Autor UNIFESP Google Scholar
Cunha, Antonio Google Scholar
Martin, Denise Autor UNIFESP Google Scholar
Institution Univ Prebiteriana Mackenzie
Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP)
Johns Hopkins Univ
Univ Fed Ceara
Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ)
Univ Catolica Santos
Abstract Objective.-Primary care offers opportunities to expand children's access to mental health (MH) services, but a given practice's community context and staff attitudes may influence which integration models are feasible. The aim of this study was to explore the possibility of using community-based primary care to increase access to MH services in low-income communities in Brazil.Methods.-A qualitative study was undertaken using focus groups with adolescents aged 11 to 16 (n = 46), parents (n = 40), and primary care clinicians and staff (n = 52) from public-sector health centers in 6 low-income Brazilian communities chosen for their geographic diversity.Results.-Parents felt they had little support in parenting and attributed much of their children's behavior and mood problems to life in violent, poor communities. Parents thought that primary care could potentially be a source of MH care, but that clinicians often seemed rushed or uninterested. Clinicians classified many child problems as issues with parenting rather than MH. Nonprofessional staff was more likely to be a source of support to parents, except at one center that had a truly integrated MH service. Adolescents reported little need for MH services.Conclusions.-Expanding the role of primary care in child MH may require close attention to how parents, adolescents, and clinicians define their problems and on the causes to which they attribute them. These factors interact with differences in how centers organize MH care, and the extent to which they take advantage of patient interactions with nonprofessional staff.
Keywords Brazil
primary health care
qualitative research
Language English
Sponsor INCLEN Trust
Date 2009-07-01
Published in Academic Pediatrics. New York: Elsevier Science Inc, v. 9, n. 4, p. 249-255, 2009.
ISSN 1876-2859 (Sherpa/Romeo, impact factor)
Publisher Elsevier B.V.
Extent 249-255
Access rights Closed access
Type Article
Web of Science ID WOS:000275913200009

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