Filmmaker Silvio Tendler defends SUS in the documentary “Health Has a Cure”

Posted on 06/21/2022 at 6:00 p.m.


(credit: Xeno Veloso / Disclosure)

It was in 1985 that the filmmaker Silvio Tendler had to perform a TAC at the Santa Casa da Misericordia in Rio, equipped with a single device for this purpose. The apparatus was donated by the government. The service, the hospitals and the great equipment are in the director’s tongue when it comes to the final film: the documentary. Health is healing. “My mother was a doctor and, due to her retirement, she was never part of SUS. She died in 1995 and was newly formed SUS. She was a doctor in the public health system: I have always seen exemplary treatments,” she notes. With affection, skill and professionalism, Tendler also knows the back of the coin: “Of course SUS has a lot of problems, and it’s not worth covering the sun with a sieve. But, badly, it’s much worse without it.” .

  • Technology and humanity make up the front of the documentary
    Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz)

  • Solidarity on stage
    Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz)

  • Relaxation captures moments in the movies
    Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz)

  • The research is ahead of the aspects taken by SUS
    Photos: Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz)

The subject of health has long been in the filmography of the director, as he has already created such films The poison is on the table (2011), on pesticides, and Family-sized farming: an alternative to the farming business (2014). Throughout his life, neurologist Paulo Niemeyer Soares, the brother of architect Oscar, was instrumental in Tendler’s health care in the 1980s. And before calculating one of the richest private image collections in the country, with more than 80,000 units, Tendler tightened ties with Brazil before winning the JK Medal – JK Centenary (awarded by MinC in 2003) or directing television. He has been the Secretary of Culture and Sports of Brasilia and DF.

At the age of 72, Tendler reaffirmed his determination to promote a politicized panel of issues in his work that embraces romanticism and abolitionist principles in his films, privatization, financial system, barriers to social justice, popular culture and ancestral knowledge. . Not to mention that Tendler also dealt with professors and historians on the screen, icons such as JK, Jango, Marighella, Ferreira Gullar and Carlos Zéfiro.

Interview // Silvio Tendler

What is the most harmful content when it comes to dismantling the Integrated Health System?

A chronic lack of funding is detrimental to the SUS issue. SUS is one of the most beautiful public health projects in the world, and probably the one with the least money, even if played in a beautiful way, never received the right resources. As if it were a malicious operation to throw the population against the construction of the SUS, as if they had a desire not to move forward. And they present everything as if the population itself had rebelled against it, and demanded its destruction. Let me give you an example: what you find most often in the media complains about the quality of care, the hours you spend in line to receive care in a hospital, or even the months and years you spend in line. to get an appointment.a procedure. So this is the most damaging factor: trying to keep SUS from succeeding is the realization of the dream of the generation that created it, especially for users who want to have quality health – health has a cure, the film expresses this: the importance of SUS and the recognition of the need to respect it. The pandemic showed the importance of SUS and now we need to move on to the second phase. Reorganize the SUS by funding its activities, creating resources, and rethinking the administrative way so that the population can love and appreciate it, as it did in the pandemic.

What is crucial in the efforts of SUS staff?

I am not alone in recognizing the commitment of SUS staff and social structures, it is recognized by the Brazilian population as a whole. We have all seen, without SUS, that the tragedy that led to the deaths of nearly 700,000 people would have been far more serious had it not been for the efforts of these workers. So I think SUS has proven the importance of its existence. The SUS staff is so much more than we can imagine: it’s incredibly complex. We recognize many of the cutting-edge activities, including UPA, hospital and medical. We don’t know what SUS prepares people for: schools, research centers, and vaccine production. SUS is very complex and extensive. It has recently functioned almost like an orchestra: they were all applauded and recognized. You have people from all walks of life wearing lab coats; this is a very important thing. I believe that SUS will have the necessary funding now because the population is more alert. It will start charging, and SUS will leave the pages of criticism, complaints, to stay on the rights claim pages. We will be able to change a picture of the past that has prevailed so far and we will have the SUS we want.

You have a very complex route; is there a way to unite interests?

I think you can have different times, styles and themes aesthetically. A work is never linear. There are, to my recollection, a thematic grouping of my films that I keep, but I have a lot of things that go beyond the biographies of three presidents: JK’s, made in 1980, Jango’s, 1984, and still. Tancredo Nevesena (2011). In the 1980s, I did The magical world of Trapalhões (1981), which brings together data from one of the largest comedy groups in Brazil with the largest box office. I have steel memory dealing with the national history of the national steel industry. I have a film about the poet Castro Alves (1999), there is a film about a revolutionary. marighella. There’s the scientist Oswaldo Cruz, about the geographer Milton Santos (2016), in 1995, I made a film about José de Castro, an ecologist and a guy who struggled with hunger. My job is much more complex than people know.

Are you still interested in politics?

Today I am making a film about Leonel Brizola, about a politician who always dreamed of being President of the Republic, he didn’t achieve his dream, but he internalized many of the historical panels I told him. It’s all more complex than trying to pose as a biographer of Republican presidents. I received this criticism for talking only about the top floor in the past, but I have a lot of very broad and differentiated films. I treat the biographies of Republican presidents with the same love. Looking to the future, I think we really need an innovation in politics and training for new generations. I miss the politicians I’ve worked with a lot. I think leadership training is becoming increasingly rare. And I am very afraid of the Brazilian management and government, with this pandemonium we are experiencing. Let’s go.

Was there a place to study in the new film?

How many people were cared for throughout Brazil in the five thousand municipalities of the country that were cared for during the covid-19 era? How many were received in ICUs? How many people were saved from the struggles of SUS workers, and often those who worked under human conditions? This is a great learning experience: the number of people who have been vaccinated in Brazil to save the lives of workers struggle through the SUS structure. Today, 70% of the Brazilian population is vaccinated up to the second dose, and a little less is in the third: everyone is helped free of charge by the structures – this is a precise proof of the functioning of SUS. There were people displaced by plane, by helicopter, to be cared for. Specifically, I provide Manaus numbers. When the action was murderous and irresponsible, lacking oxygen in Manaus, the national mobilizations, though not just the SUS, mobilized a lot of work to save the Amazon River and inland life. I just told you: Live SUS.

Is it all just a celebration?

When you get into a job that has the dimension of what I’ve just done, I think the best thing – and I’ve brought this up from the beginning of my career – is not to make a white plate portrait. Never try to hide the problem area; it is to reveal everything, to reveal. I think the worst tribute you can pay to a person, for example, is to believe that you are a saint, that you are exempt from criticism of any kind of person. In the case of the new film, it was no different: I interviewed people who speak well and speak badly. I think the discussion is important: to ask questions to improve the quality and performance of SUS as well. It all ends with my method of working as a documentary filmmaker. I’m not an advertiser: I don’t have to hide reality to promote a product. I have to face the reality.

Which character marked you health has a cure?

All the characters in the movie are very rich and always very respected. He was taken to the hospital emergency room, on the verge of death, and treated by a patient who was dancing and lining a liner in the ward. That, to me, is a very moving scene. Today is the scene of Dr. Jurema Werneck, a black doctor, representing the amnesty in Brazil. He tells the story of his mother — his father was the gatekeeper of the Air Force hospital — and how they were not allowed to use the hospital. The mother had a stroke and was treated with aspirin by a doctor. His mother has died, and Jurema has become a doctor and is fighting for public health in Brazil. The film revolves around a man with a spinal cord problem in Rio Grande do Sul, who treats him completely free of charge – he also receives medicine and is alive thanks to this action. I think the balance is very positive.

health has a cure

Silvio Tendler’s documentary on the Integrated Health System. Free access: https: //youtu.be/b-kZMfwvKsM

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