Ciência & Saúde Coletiva
Print version ISSN 1413-8123
SILVA, Silvio Fernandes da. The organization of regional and integrated healthcare delivery systems: challenges facing Brazil's Unified Health System. Ciênc. saúde coletiva [online]. 2011, vol.16, n.6, pp. 2753-2762. ISSN 1413-8123. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1413-81232011000600014.
This article examines the causes of the segmentation/fragmentation in the healthcare process and the benefits of the constitution of networks set up to rationalize expenditures, optimize resources and ensure care tailored to the needs of the users. Its main purpose is to analyze the current challenges facing Brazil's Unified Health System, in order to promote improved integration between services. Among the challenges, those related to the insufficiency of resources due to low public funding, the training and education processes and their effects on the availability of health professionals to work in the public health system and the difficulties in the decentralization of health services and actions in the context of the Brazilian Federation Pact should be stressed. The paper concludes that, besides the efforts to tackle these challenges, the organization of regionalized networks integrated with the Unified Health System also depends on the improvement of intergovernmental management in the health regions to bolster the agreement on responsibilities among the government areas and the qualification of primary healthcare to coordinate care and ensure its continuity at other levels of the system.
Keywords : Integrated delivery systems; Regionalization; Comprehensive health care; Primary health care; Unified Health System.