Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública
On-line version ISSN 1680-5348
Print version ISSN 1020-4989
MENOLLI, Poliana Vieira da Silva; IVAMA, Adriana Mitsue and CORDONI JUNIOR, Luis. Description of the pharmaceutical services offered by the universal health care system at the primary care level in Londrina, Paraná, Brazil. Rev Panam Salud Publica [online]. 2009, vol.25, n.3, pp.254-259. ISSN 1680-5348. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1020-49892009000300009.
OBJECTIVES: To describe the pharmaceutical services offered at the primary care level by Brazil's Sistema Único de Salud (Universal Health Care System). METHODS: The study took place in Londrina, Paraná, in January-March 2003. The World Health Organization's recommended drug use indicators were employed. Included in the study were 13 primary health care facilities in which 390 patients were interviewed. RESULTS: None of the facilities had a pharmacist. The average office visit lasted 8.6 minutes; the mean number of drugs prescribed was 2.2; and injections were given in 10.9%. Generic drugs were prescribed 66.5% of the time and 73% of the prescribed drugs were included in the Lista Municipal de Medicamentos Esenciales (Municipal List of Essential Drugs). Only 46.6% of the patients interviewed reported having the basic instructions required for appropriate use of the drug prescribed. CONCLUSIONS: These results can aid in restructuring the municipality's pharmaceutical services because they underscore the need to improve and to increase rational drug use as a therapeutic resource imperative to supporting health efforts.
Keywords : Drugs; pharmacoepidemiology; pharmaceutical services; drugs, essential; primary care; Brazil.