Dr. Maria Joao Sacadura

University of Coimbra, Portugal

Title: Neurology Influences for Nephrology Social Work practice: Adherence to Treatment Regimen



The present proposal is integrated in a Social Work PhD carried out in Portugal. One of the aims is to systematize knowledge and make a crossover of information between the fields of Neuroscience and Social Work in the context of adherence to treatment regime in chronic diseases, particularly in End-Stage Renal Disease(ESRD). The Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is a worldwide public health problem and the scientific community has been aware and focused on the study of kidney function deficiencies and cognitive decline. There is empirical evidence that patients treated with dialysis have high rates of brain infarcts, brain atrophy, and white matter disease (Drew. D. et al., 2017). These brain disorders can impact the daily lives of patients and possibly influences potential social determinants of the adherence to treatment regime along the continuum of the disease. Non-adherence to hemodialysis treatment is also a health public problem with high consequences at an individual level (quality of life) and in an increase of health cost. Social Work is the element of the interdisciplinary team that evaluates and intervenes in the social determinants of health and with psychosocial factors which can have great impact on the clinical well-being. This proposal intends to explore and look for the existing links between the two fields of knowledge, based on studies already documented and entail a relevant aspect to consider between Social Work and neurology in ESRD.


Graduate and PhD student in Social Work. Currently working in Fresenius Medical Care Portugal (FMC), both as a Director and Social Worker. Postgraduate in Social Gerontology; attendance of the Business Management Program with specialization in Human Resources; advanced training in Approaches and Strategies for the Intervention in Complex Social Problems, among others. Experience in the development of pioneering projects co-financed by the EU in the field of reconciling family and work life. Joint author of the study “Ageing of the Portuguese Population: Dependency, Activation and Quality”, mandated by Economic and Social Committee. Member of the Ethics Committee of FMC Portugal – NephroCare.

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