José da Rocha Carvalheiro
This number of Revista is comprised entirely by articles from the normal ongoing editorial process. There are eight Brazilian articles from various states and research groups from universities and health services. Revista has continued with its distinctive feature: all articles have more than one author. The number of authors ranged between three and seven, and most commonly there were four. All articles were peer reviewed and will be printed in a relatively short period of time, showing the vitality we have achieved after a vigorous battle in which we counted upon the support of the scientific community. This period will be shortened even further, and we hope will be transformed in early publication by means of virtual media as soon as our submission to enter the Scielo system is accepted.
We are beginning to introduce special thematic lines into the ordinary issues, instead of having special numbers. We are presently preparing at least four more themes. Two of them continue previous thematic issues: endemic diseases and statistical methods in epidemiology. Two are new, although one of them has been announced previously: the debate on ethics in research in human beings and the current "softening" that is being proposed for certain paragraphs of the Declaration of Helsinki. The last theme originated in a meeting in which Abrasco played an active role, and is related to the success of the experiences introducing the practice of epidemiology into health services.
Three of the studies in the present issue are related to nutritional status and disease. Two analyze food consumption through food frequency questionnaires, and discuss validation and comparability between methods. The other analyzes measuring agreement in weighing methods in child care centers. The authors of the studies are from USP (University of São Paulo) (6), Universidade Metodista de São Paulo (São Paulo Methodist University) (1), UFMG (Federal University of the State of Minas Gerais) (4) and FIOCRUZ (Oswaldo Cruz Foundation) (1).
One of the studies, whose authors are from UNESP (São Paulo State University) (2) and UNICAMP (Campinas State University) (1), analyzes survival of individuals sixty years old and older by using referred morbidity in household surveys.
Two studies are from Maranhão, and include a total of nine researchers from UFMA (Maranhão State Federal University); the first is related to under-registration of births in a household sample survey, and analyzes the results of "mass" registration campaigns; the second relates to mortality due to external causes in the city of São Luís.
The authors from the Secretaria Municipal de Saúde de São Paulo (São Paulo City Health Department) (3) and UNICAMP (1) use a structured questionnaire to analyze case finding of pulmonary tuberculosis in a purposeful sample of individuals at an alcohol and drug abuse treatment service.
One study analyzes an extensive four-year follow-up of more than six thousand individuals in a highly endemic area for leprosy, and relates risk with the results from serological testing. The authors are from Secretaria de Estado da Saúde de São Paulo (São Paulo State Health Department) (4), Secretaria Municipal de Saúde de Severínia, SP (The City of Severínia Health Department)(1), UNESP (São Paulo State University)(1) and UNIFESP (São Paulo State Federal University) (1).
We should also draw readers' attention to a Special Editorial written by Glória Teixeira, member of the Epidemiology Committee of Abrasco, regarding the creation of the Secretaria Nacional de Vigilância em Saúde (Health Surveillance Department) within the Ministry of Health. Although the opinions given in the Special Editorials generally reflect the opinion of their authors, in this particular case they incorporate the results of a meeting of the Epidemiology Committee with the head of the new Department and the debates of a Round Table at the Congresso Brasileiro de Saúde Coletiva (Brazilian Congress of Collective Health) held in Brasília in August of this year.
Finally, in the News section, we would like to point out a report by the Heads of the Instituto Pasteur de São Paulo (Pasteur Institute of São Paulo), Ivanete Kotait and Neide Takaoka, on the institution's centennial in August. Far from being a mere news item is the noteworthy objectivity in describing the current epidemiological scenario of a zoonosis with natural foci, in particular the importance of bats in what the authors call "aerial cycle" of the endemic-epidemic process.
Enjoy your reading.