[The religious imaginary of Hansen's disease patients: a comparative study of former inmates of the asylums of São Paulo and current Hansen's disease patients].Hist Cienc Saude Manguinhos 2009 Apr-Jun; 16(2):489-504HC
The article analyzes the religiosity of Hansen's disease patients who lived during two distinct treatment periods of the sick: that of internment in asylums and the current practice. Ten semi-structured interviews focused on health, religion and Hansen's disease, broaching the ways the two groups faced religion. In the former inmate group, the presence of institutionalized religion was noted, which served the purposes of vigilance and isolationist therapeutics. Present day Hansen's disease patients still feel the stigmatic weight of'leprosy" in certain situations. Five questionnaires were also given to DHDS health professionals, who presented their considerations concerning the patient's religion and the treatment.