Labor relations of physiotherapists in the city of Salvador, Bahia, Brazil

  • Thiago Santos de Souza Universidade Federal da Bahia; Instituto de Saúde Coletiva
  • Jorge Henrique Santos Saldanha Universidade Federal da Bahia; Instituto de Saúde Coletiva
  • Ivan Maia de Mello


Socioeconomic changes deriving from the reorganization of the current system and the conformation of the neoliberal State have led to precariousness in the occupational world. The productive restructuring process, coming from the industrial sector, has caused a strong impact in the health field and, as a consequence, in physiotherapy. This article analyzes the labor relations of physiotherapists who work in private clinics in the city of Salvador, Bahia, Brazil, correlating them to the restructuring process of the occupational world. This is an exploratory study, with a qualitative design, based on the theoretical framework of sociology of work. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with eight physiotherapists. The approach used was content analysis by thematic categories, previously identified by the authors, namely: centrality of work, socioeconomic conjuncture, occupational precariousness, academic education, and trade union organization. Comprehensive analysis has revealed the centrality that work occupies in physiotherapists’ life. When analyzing the socioeconomic conjuncture, we identified the processes that influence on professional practice and how they shape worker’s profile. As for occupational precariousness, we categorized the professional agreements, occupational conditions, stability, and remuneration. Academic education was related to reproduction of the capital reasoning, accompanied by the expansion, without planning and regulation, of private Higher Education. In turn, trade union organization has shown to be detached from the physiotherapist. The analysis of correlations between socioeconomic forces that influence on the professional practice indicated that the labor relations of the physiotherapists interviewed showed up as precarious and unstable.


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How to Cite
Souza, T., Saldanha, J., & Mello, I. (2014). Labor relations of physiotherapists in the city of Salvador, Bahia, Brazil . Saúde E Sociedade, 23(4), 1301-1315.