Brazil

WIEGO’s OHS project has supported the ongoing work of the Worker’s Health Unit (PISAT) at the Institute for Collective Health at the Federal University of Bahia, which is headed by Professor Vilma Santana. Together with WIEGO, the Institute has conducted research on OHS in three informal occupational groups (domestic workers, street vendors, and waste pickers), has run an advocacy campaign together with the Salvador municipality on the prevention of hearing loss among street vendors during the famous Salvador Carnival. WIEGO has also helped to support the Institute's ongoing work on the integration of worker's health into the primary health care system and contributed to a dialogue held in Salvador City in 2012 called "Primary Health Care and Workers' Health - Possibilities and Challenges for Informal Workers' Safety and Health Care."

Brazil has moved far along the path of integrating occupational health into primary health care. In 2012, breakthroughs in Brazil saw the adoption of the first National Workers’ Health Policy, which regards informal workers as legal workers, and stipulates that the type of employment (formal or informal) must be registered with the health information systems. In October 2014 WIEGO supported a six member group of community health workers from the Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) in India on an exchange visit to Brazil so that they could learn first-hand about how occupational health can be integrated into primary healthcare. This will help SEWA as it pushes for this to happen in India under the current universal healthcare reforms. 

Featured Resource

Alfers, Laura. 2011. Occupational Health and Safety & Domestic Work

(Available in English, French, Portuguese, Spanish and Swahili)