Pediatric care by the Brazilian Public Health System: why is funding so challenging?

In Brazil, about 75% of the population depends on the national Public Health System (SUS, abbreviation in Portuguese) to have their right to health and life guaranteed. For seven out of ten children, it is the only alternative for accessing healthcare, which makes the program an extremely necessary public policy for Brazil. Alone, public hospitals cannot serve the more than 150 million Brazilians who depend on the SUS. And this is where philanthropic hospitals make the scene, such as Pequeno Príncipe, the largest exclusively pediatric hospital in Brazil.

Despite the indisputable relevance for the health sector, philanthropists face major financial problems, the root of which is funding. “The payment model per procedure is based on a historical medical cost, that is, an average amount is paid for the same diagnosis, even with different evolution. The point is that the historical average was built in the 1980s, based on the medicine practiced at that time,” explains the technical director of Pequeno Príncipe Hospital, Donizetti Dimer Giamberardino Filho.

This is the subject of the 2022 tenth edition main article of Pequeno Príncipe News, which also presents an article about the engagement of society in generous actions, which has increased worldwide. The World Giving Index 2022 survey, carried out by the British organization Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), represented in Brazil by the Institute for Development of Social Investment (IDIS, abbreviation in Portuguese), shows that more people donated money to social organizations and helped strangers in 2021 than in any year of the preceding decade. For the fifth consecutive year, the most generous country in the CAF ranking was Indonesia; Brazil was in the 18th position in the list, which includes 119 countries.

At last, the Pequeno Príncipe News presents details about a research project which wants to identify how to avoid relapses in the treatment of leukemias with bone marrow transplantation (BMT). The incidence of relapse after transplantation ranges from 13% to 47%, depending on the patient, disease and characteristics of the transplant. In Pequeno Príncipe, about 21% of patients had relapses. “When the child has relapses after the transplant, the possibilities of treatment with real healing options become scarce. With this research, we want to understand how to try to avoid these relapses, contributing to the improvement of the chances of cure for these patients,” points out doctor and researcher Polliany Pelegrina.

To read the full-length articles in the tenth edition of the Pequeno Príncipe News in 2022, please access this link.

Click here and learn more about the use of the funds raised in 2022 Gala