Educational Research

Educational Research (ISSN:2141-5161) Vol. 3(5), pp. 473-479, May 2012         
Copyright © 2012 International Research Journals


Full Length Research Paper

The role of health care assistance in pregnant women exposed to malnutrition 

Anne Marcelle Marques Coelho1,3, Marta Corrêa Gomes1, Christiane Leal Corrêa1,2

1Professional Master's in Health Education - Gama Filho University

2Laboratory of Experimental Pathology, Gama Filho University, Rua Manoel Vitorino, 553 - Piedade Rio de Janeiro - RJ, 20740-900, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil

3Hall of the State of Rio de Janeiro - Center for Support to the Family Health – NASF

*Corresponding      Author      E-mail: ; Tel: 55 (021) 2599-7248

Received 23 April, 2012;  Accepted May 02, 2012


The process of malnutrition during pregnancy that leads to dysfunction of the fetus’ endocrine system is denominated metabolic programming. The mother's nutritional status can greatly influence the development of the child. We sought to evaluate the performance of health professionals working at the family health strategy regarding a group of pregnant women in a disadvantaged community in Rio de Janeiro. Sixty health professionals working answered a questionnaire with objective questions. Descriptive analyses were performed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS, Inco, IL, USA). Of the respondents, 78% were Community Health Agents, nurses and nursing technician, 70% were female, 67% had completed high school and 25% had an University degree, 63% had less than three year experience in primary care. Among them, 43% were unaware and 45% had no opinion about the metabolic programming, 47% declared reading only eventually magazines and scientific articles about health. Regarding continuing education activities, 52% rarely participate in health care courses, 45% have the habit of participating in conferences. When asked about the most effective health information technology for community-based educational activities, the most cited were: women’s culinary workshops, informational folders, multimedia lectures and educational videos. We conclude that it is necessary to stimulate continuing education in primary care health unites due to the turnover of health care professionals.


Keywords: Continuing education, pregnant women, primary health care, health professionals, metabolic programming.

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