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From alternative to official: complementary therapies and traditional medicine in the Brazilian Public Health System

Grant number: 19/13634-4
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): February 01, 2020
Effective date (End): January 31, 2021
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Anthropology - Theory of Anthropology
Principal Investigator:Rodrigo Ferreira Toniol
Grantee:Lucas André Bolonha Nunes
Home Institution: Instituto de Filosofia e Ciências Humanas (IFCH). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:18/05193-5 - Institutionalized spirituality public policies, clinical uses and medical research in the legitimation of spirituality as a health issue in Brazil, AP.JP


This research is dedicated to identify and analyze the various forms of officialization of non-biomedical health practices in the Brazilian public health system, establishing a comparison between the National Policy on Integrative and Complementary Practices of the SUS (PNPIC) and The National Policy of Health Care to Indigenous Peoples (PNASPI). Part of the project "Spirituality Institutionalized - Public policy, clinical uses and medical research in the legitimization of spirituality as a health factor in Brazil", I focus on to the constitution of these health policies in an attempt to understand how the Brazilian State legitimizes and regulates such therapeutic practices. In this sense, I find that this analysis contributes to illuminate part of the network involved in these accommodations, as well as the categories, justifications, and practices tangled in the offering of these health care modes. Here I present my hypothesis that both policies find in the World Health Organization (WHO) documents and resolutions a source of legitimation but assumed local contours when implemented in the Brazilian health system. To execute this research, the analysis will focus on two sections: the first is the construction of a database in which I will compare both policies and the tensed categories in their formulations and their official texts, and the second is the ethnography in two different Basic Health Units, Barão Geraldo/Campinas unit and Real Parque/São Paulo unit, in which treatments regarding PNPIC and PNASPI protocols are offered, in order to analyze these tensions in daily treatment.