Prioritization of pharmaceuticals in urban rivers: the case of oral contraceptives in the Belém River basin, Curitiba / PR, Brazil
Efforts to prioritize pharmaceutical products in urban rivers are still rare in Brazil. However, European and U.S. management experiences of pharmaceuticals in urban waters show that this has been one of the first steps necessary to reduce and control this type of pollution. The main objective of this research was to evaluate the presence of oral contraceptives in the catchment area of the Belém River in Curitiba based on the different criteria normally applied to prioritization. For this, in addition to a literature review, historical data on the concentrations of contraceptive hormones in the Belém River, data on pharmaceutical consumption in the basin (collected through interviews by random sampling in pharmacies and from the database of medicines provided by the City of Curitiba Health Units), and data from interviews conducted using intentional sampling with regional stakeholders. The results show that a consistent set of criteria supporting prioritization of ethinylestradiol and estradiol already exists, while the periodic monitoring of these two hormones has proved feasible and necessary in the waters of the region.
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