Oral cancer affects thousands of people around the world, and the later the diagnosis is performed, the worse are prognosis and survival. In Brazil, primary care is the preferred gateway to the Unified Health System (Sistema Único de Saúde [SUS]) and has an important role in the coordination of and responsibility for user's care. The objective of this study is to evaluate the service flow of users with suspicion of oral cancer in Primary Care and also the dentist's perception regarding the diagnosis of oral cancer in the city of São Paulo.
It is a quantitative-qualitative study, where 374 questionnaires were applied and 17 interviews were conducted with primary care dentists.
It was shown that professionals are aware of the role of Primary Care and also know their importance and need on referral network.
There are barriers that are imposed by the health network, that create difficulties to guarantee their fully professional exercises, with loss of health care tracking on the health care system.