GRUPEV and Community Health Workers in Brazil

After 3 months in Brazil my work in the field has completed. It has left me with many great memories and wonderful experiences. During my fieldwork, I had the opportunity to see the incredible work that different ‘stakeholders’ are performing to improve the life conditions of the people affected by Hansen’s disease. In this last blog, I would like to thank principally two of these stakeholders who supported my research in the field and provide their knowledge and experience to improve our results.

Rossana5 Grupev


GRUPEV – students of the University of Pernambuco

The group of the investigation and extension of care, social practices and health rights from vulnerable populations – GRUPEV, is a group formed by nursery students of the University of Pernambuco, directed by the professors Danielle Moura and Raphaela Delmondes. The GRUPEV is an active participant in the organization of activities for project MORHAN, Self-care groups and research in the field of the projects related to Hansen’s disease of the university of Pernambuco. They do their activities aside of their own classes. Two trainings, both regarding data collection and a third training in databases, were provided to GRUPEV before the data collection. Their effort and excellent work made the collection of information in the field possible.


Community Health Workers (HCW) of the Unit of Health of Cohab Peixinhos

Rossana5 Community Health Workers

The second group who provided a tremendous support in the fieldresearch was the team of Community Health Workers (HCW) from territory I and III of the Unit of Health of Cohab Peixinhos, under the direction of Vagner Belmont. This team formed by 12 community members, provide accompaniment during the whole data collection, work that was also performed aside of their own daily activities. The HCW provided the knowledge about the community and the cultural norms and beliefs, which made it possible that, with help of the GRUPEV students, we could perform the research activities in the territory. In an additional way, it was also received substantial impact that the HCW generate in the preventive and curative activities regarding the Hansen’s disease. For example, “el dia de la mancha” (the day of the skin spot) where all the efforts were focused on the detection of early symptoms of the Hansen’s disease. This activity was performed in the unit of health and in the schools where all the students were exanimated.



By last, I also would like to thank the team of NLR-Brazil, principally to Duane Hinders for your support in the organization of this research. And also to Rejane Almeida who not only provide all her knowledge regarding administrative tasks, and advice about how to develop all the activities in the best feasible way, but also for opening the doors of her house and being a constant support for me each day of this amazing experience. Thank you for following this blog during these months and for giving me the possibility to show you the reality of Hansen's disease in Brazil through my own experience.



Blog written by Rossana,

Brazil, 22 September 2017






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