Chagas disease and healthcare rights in the Bolivian immigrant community of São Paulo, Brazil

by Mussa Abujamra Aith F, Forsyth C, Aparecida Shikanai-Yasuda M. Tropical Medicine Infectious Diseases 2020, 5(2): 62. doi: 10.3390/tropicalmed5020062

Summary: This study discusses the legal framework surrounding access to healthcare for Bolivian migrants with Chagas disease living in São Paulo, Brazil. Although the right to healthcare is constitutionally guaranteed for all, in practice, immigrants, especially those without documentation, encounter barriers to initiating treatment for Chagas disease. Access to healthcare for Bolivian migrants could be improved by providing them with the primary health care system (SUS) card; this would also provide a potential pathway toward regularization of status. The approval of clinical protocols and therapeutic guidelines for Chagas disease is an opportunity to improve care for all Brazilians with Chagas disease. Programmes with multidisciplinary teams should be developed, taking into account the specific social and cultural needs of the migrant Bolivian population.

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