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Universidad y Salud

Print version ISSN 0124-7107
On-line version ISSN 2389-7066

Abstract

AGUDELO-SUAREZ, Andrés A et al. Oral health and gender in relation to the elderly population assisted by the public hospital network of Medellin: The health personnel points of view. Univ. Salud [online]. 2016, vol.18, n.1, pp.58-68. ISSN 0124-7107.

Objective: To explore the perceptions about oral health and gender in relation to the elderly population assisted by the public hospital network of Medellin from the health personnel perspective. Materials and methods: A qualitative and ethnographic study was conducted through 34 semi-structured interviews in health personnel in the State Social Enterprise E.S.E Metrosalud. Interviews were transcribed and a content analysis was carried out according to categories from the participants' discourses. Results: Three main categories were found: 1) Needs and problems of general and oral health and their determinants; 2) Symbols and significances of the elderly; 3) Perspectives and gender roles and its relationship with social practices on oral health. In general terms, participants perceived high disease burden and barriers of access to health services. In addition, gender differences were perceived related to the roles that people assume, self-care practices and health services utilization profiles. Conclusions: Interviewed providers perceived that the elderly population assisted by the public hospital network of Medellin is exposed to social vulnerability that affects oral health conditions. In addition, gender related differences were found. Social policies that ensure equity in this population group are required.

Keywords : Oral health; gender; elderly; health of the elderly; dentistry for the elderly; health services.

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