9º World Congress on Health Information and Libraries

Salvador, Bahia - Brazil, September, 20 to 23 - 2005


4th Regional Coordination Meeting of the VHL

September, 19 to 20 - 2005

P163 - Health Cultural Inheritance

The cultural inheritance of a nation allows an orientation and an identity, which are vital references for a community’s values, like patriotic feelings, ethics and solidarity, consequently serving to enhance citizenship.
In the Brazilian public health field, a result of a collective process, these sources are considered the pillars of the National Health System created by the 1988 Constitution, which is still being amplified.
In Brazil, the Ministry of Health has signed a Cooperation Agreement with the Ministry of Culture, in order to take the necessary actions, so as to identify, preserve, value and disclose the Health Cultural Inheritance representing the country’s public health history.  This is a contribution to improve and spread, as much as possible, the knowledge of a Social Policy in a country with deep social disparities.
The main objective, however, is to promote and preserve history, the information to have the knowledge access and services, which is an important plan to develop the cooperation process where several partnerships have already been made and which are:
- The Images of the Unconscious Museum Friends Society in Rio de Janeiro, RJ.
- The Research Help Foundation/ Federal University of Bahia, in Salvador, BA
- The Medical National Academy of Rio de Janeiro, RJ
- The Public Health Virtual Library / the Ministry of Health, the Latin American and Caribbean Science and Health Information Center/ OPAS/OMS.
- The Centralized Public Health System Library / Ministry of Health in Brasilia, DF
- The Health Cultural Center / Ministry of Health in Rio de Janeiro, RJ
- The Microfilm and Digitalizing Center / Ministry of Health in Rio de Janeiro, RJ
- The Evandro Chagas Institute / Ministry of Health in Rio de Janeiro, RJ
- The Oswaldo Cruz Foundation / Ministry of Health in Rio de Janeiro, RJ
These are initiatives aiming at the fulfillment of the Cooperation Agreement signed in Rio de Janeiro, on May 11, 2005. They also serve to substantiate the 12th National Health Conference, which is the most representative Brazilian public health forum.
So as to widen the capacity to capture, process and spread information, the Ministry of Health works with documentation centers, libraries, files, museums, study centers, hospitals and information units.
The focus on the health history approach restoring policies, important people, documents, facts, events and services allows the evaluation on developments, challenges and strategic performances. It also helps structuring the present reality, the participation, the social control and the support of the Centralized Public Health System, as a public property of the Brazilian people, a result of a State policy aiming at a fair, complete and a whole national health practice.