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Traditional, complementary and integrative medicines in the Brazilian health primary care


We present a short situational overview of the presence of Traditional, Complementary, and Integrative Medicine (TCIM) in Brazilian Primary Health Care (PHC) and the training and research in this area in Brazil. Databases, legislation, regulations and government reports were analyzed. In 2017-2018, 29 TCIM modalities were institutionalized in the Unified Health System (SUS). According to official data, they expanded and were offered by 20% of the PHC teams in 2016, in 56% of the municipalities. Almost 80% of TCIM occur in PHC, being more common: body practices, medicinal plants, acupuncture, and homeopathy. There is little national training and practice regulation in TCIM. Most MTCI practitioners are conventional PHC practitioners who learn and offer MTCI on their own initiative. They play an important role in the expansion of TCMI in PHC. The insertion of the theme in education is incipient and there are researches in the area, but few publications. TCIM institutionalization strategies in PHC involve federal stimulus to municipalities, through competent professionals, permanent education in service, and governmental action for their insertion in the professional training.


complementary therapies, primary health care, staff development, health policy, Brazil