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Meanings constructed by medical students about playing with hospitalized children: reflections on medical education and humanization of health assistance

Author(s): Carla Guanaes Lorenzi | Sabina Aparecida Álvares de Paiva | Milena Shingu Funai

Journal: Saúde & Transformação Social
ISSN 2178-7085

Volume: 1;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 83;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: hospitalized children | play and playthings | medical education | humanization of assistanc

In recent decades, the discussion about the importance of humanization of the health assistance has strengthened, pointing to the need for a more comprehensive understanding of the health-illness process. Considering this trend, this study discusses the meanings produced by medical students about the playing with hospitalized children and its implications for the humanization of health assistance and for the medical education. It was invited to participate on this study medical students of the initial grades of a medical facylty in the interior of São Paulo State, which were also members of a group inspired by the "Doutores da Alegria". These students used the clown image to make visits to a pediatric ward and play with hospitalized children. Open interviews were conducted with those students seeking to understand how they compreehend their activities, the difficulties presented and the arresting moments experienced by them in this practice. Data were analyzed using qualitative procedures of analysis, based on the contributions of the social constructionist movement in science. Our results indicate the existence of a strong emotional investment of students in these activities, considering their goal of transforming the reality of suffering experienced by the hospitalized children through play and through the quality of the relationships established with them. Our results also points to the existence of a positive evaluation of this kind of practice by the medical students, considering the antecipation of their practical learning at the hospital reality, the contact with their own feelings in relation to their patients and the possibility of overcome personal difficulties. Based on these results, we discuss the importance of this kind of practice for the humanization of health assistance and for the improvement of medical education.
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