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Cadernos de Saúde Pública

On-line version ISSN 1678-4464Print version ISSN 0102-311X


SCHRAIBER, Lilia Blima et al. Health needs and masculinities: primary health care services for men. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2010, vol.26, n.5, pp.961-970. ISSN 1678-4464.

This study deals with the relations between masculinities and health care, approaching the recognition of health needs among male users of primary health care and the responses by the services. The study is part of a larger research project in four Brazilian States, with a convenience sample of eight health services. Ethnographic observation was compared with semi-structured interviews with 182 health care users from 15 to 65 years of age and 72 health professionals. Thematic analysis of the ethnographic records and interviews was based on gender references and studies on health work. The findings show how medicalization of health needs affects users, professionals, and services, disguising issues related to masculinity. Primary care focuses mainly on women, thereby reproducing gender inequalities in health services operations and professional performance, with women receiving disciplined care and men receiving insufficient attention and care.

Keywords : Men's Health; Gender and Health; Primary Health Care.

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