Palliative Care: Practice of Family Health Strategy Physicians
ABSTRACT With the advance of scientific knowledge and increased life expectancy, the illusion has been created that the human being is immortal. In addition, there is a deficiency in current medical training, whereby professional technicians are trained without being prepared to take care of a patient with serious and incurable disease. Towards the middle of the 20th century, there were movements aimed at the humanization of health care, which took into account the integrality of the individual. Palliative care is an approach that improves the quality of life of patients and their families in the face of life-threatening illnesses by relieving suffering, treating pain, and other symptoms of a physical, psychosocial and spiritual nature. Considering that this type of care can be offered in different contexts, it has recently been highlighted that Primary Health Care can be a suitable setting for palliative care assistance. However, there is still a difficulty for Primary Care services in Brazil to offer this kind of assistance. Thus, the research was aimed at understanding the perception of physicians of the Family Health Strategy about palliative care. A descriptive study, with a qualitative approach, using thematic analysis method. The participants were 16 physicians who work in the Family Health Strategy Units of the city of Lavras, Minas Gerais. Data were collected through a semi-structured interview. From the data analysis it was identified that the doctors have incipient knowledge regarding the concept of palliative care and that although they had some type of experience with this type of patient, they encounter difficulties in approaching it in a holistic way. This is mainly due to the deficiency in academic training, which still favors biomedical knowledge and the cure of diseases to the detriment of the relief of human suffering. It is concluded that it is essential that this topic be addressed during medical training, as well as discussed among the professionals already working in the health services so as to provide a better quality of life and death.