In the last ten years the need to encourage undergraduate qualifications in collective health on new organizational, conceptual and political bases in Brazil has been put forward, transcending the peripheral and/or merely complementary nature taken on many of the traditional curricula available on the various courses in health and directing it more effectively to strengthen Brazilian Sanitary Reform and the Unified Health System (SUS). Thus, the proposition of undergraduate courses in collective health came to represent a strategy to radically expand the number of professionals who are able to work in the area, on a solid formative base.
ISC, since the start of that period, has contributed to strengthening this discussion in the field of collective health, holding the first workshop to analyze the pertinence and viability of creating undergraduate courses in collective health in Salvador in 2002, and involving participation by various representatives from higher education institutions, municipal and state departments and the Ministry of Health. From then on, the topic has gained momentum and was established in various forums in the area, encouraging mobilization to launch this academic programme in Brazil.
These mobilizations gained momentum within the context of expanding public higher education in the country, and brought about by the Programme To Support the Restructuring and Expansion of Federal Universities Plan (Reuni), instituted by Presidential Decree Nº 6.096 of 24th April, 2007.
Within this context and consistent with its ethical and political commitments with collective health qualifications and establishment of the Brazilian Sanitary Reform and SUS, ISC launched the Undergraduate Course in Collective Health (CGSC) on the Salvador campus of the Federal University of Bahia in 2009.