Ciência & Saúde Coletiva
On-line version ISSN 1678-4561Print version ISSN 1413-8123
DRACHLER, Maria de Lourdes; CORTES, Soraya M. Vargas; CASTRO, Janice Dorneles de and LEITE, José Carlos de Carvalho. Methodological approach to select indicators of health inequalities to define priorities for social policies in Brazil. Ciênc. saúde coletiva [online]. 2003, vol.8, n.2, pp.461-470. ISSN 1678-4561. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1413-81232003000200011.
Promoting equality in health is a challenge for policy makers. The magnitude of health inequalities and the shortage of resources require policy development supported by health situation analysis and scientific and expert evidence of the impact of policies, programs and actions in promoting equity. This study presents methodological aspects of the selection of indicators of health inequalities devised by the Inquiry into Inequalities in Health in the State of Rio Grande do Sul to help defining priorities for social policies in Brazil. The indicators were devised to assess health inequalities as differences in quality of living and human capabilities which are socially determined. The method is based on principles of active promotion of equity which orient (1) the Brazilian National Health system, (2) the inquiries into inequalities in health in the United Kingdom and (3) the RAWP method for allocation of financial resources for health among the areas of a country, state or municipality, and take into account the particularities of the information systems in Brazil.
Keywords : Inequalities in health; Equity; Health situation analysis; Inquiry into inequalities in health; Health indicators; Social indicators.