Revista Brasileira de Epidemiologia
Print version ISSN 1415-790X
TOMASI, Elaine et al. Working conditions and self-medication among primary healthcare professionals in an urban area of Pelotas, RS. Rev. bras. epidemiol. [online]. 2007, vol.10, n.1, pp.66-74. ISSN 1415-790X. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1415-790X2007000100008.
This cross-sectional study investigated working conditions and the morbidity of basic healthcare professionals in Pelotas using data on sociodemographics, behavior, activities and working environment, as well as morbidity. 329 professionals from 39 healthcare services were studied. The vast majority of these were women (80%) and the average age was 41 (±9.2 years). Almost 30% of these professionals came from the C and D social strata; 19% were smokers and 61% had not done any regular physical exercise during the one month prior to being interviewed. Almost half of the interviewees had another job (51%) and 25% needed to miss work over the past month mainly due to personal health problems (59%) and to family problems (22%). On average, workers saw nearly 30 people per day in a 40-hour working week. Health problems were reported by 40% of the interviewees, 27% concerning circulation, and 18% concerning osteomuscular difficulties. Apart from having health problems, 67% of the interviewees used medicines on a regular basis and 47% had used medicines in the past 15 days. A quarter were accustomed to self-medicating themselves, with a significantly greater proportion among doctors and other professionals of a higher level, among workers of greater socioeconomic status and among those with more than one job.
Keywords : Healthcare professionals; Self-medication; Worker health.