Azienda Unita Locale Socio Sanitaria Veneto (Italy) The Veneto Region

Veneto Region is situated in the North-Eastern part of Italy and is divided into seven provinces. It covers an area of 18.391 km² and has about 4,9 million inhabitants that live in 580 municipalities. About 71% of the population live in small towns with less than 30.000 inhabitants and the average population density is 263 per km².

With reference to the health system, the Veneto Regional Government provides health and social services to the resident population through 21 Local Health Units and 2 Hospital Trusts.

eHealth potential is perceived as high within Veneto Region’s health service organization. However, a full understanding is still to be gained about benefits and limitations of e-Health in general – and of Telemedicine in particular – for the various stakeholders in the care delivery process.

The Veneto Region’s priorities, as the public authority governing health policies and decisions, in the period 2012-2014– established by the Regional Plan for Health and Social Services 2012-2014 – can be defined as:

• Integrated management of the patient and continuity of care;
• Organizational redefining of hospital suplly, according to qualitative and quantitative criteria of homogeneity;
• Redefining of expertise and implementation of synergy between hospital and territory;
• development of policies for Professional integration and intersectoral interventions with sustainable and qualified organizational models;
• Investment on clinical and organizational appropriateness, with active and responsible  involvement of professionals and citizens;
• Need to ensure the economic and financial government in order to guaranteed the balanced budget to the Regional social and health system

From a technical point of view the objectives are:

• Enable the interoperability of eHealth services at regional level
• Put down the basis for a standardized EHR systems at local level with a view to establishing a Patient Health Record at Regional level
• Develop eHealth-based disease management models for outpatients’ treatment
• Foster the interoperability of the above systems/services at national and European level.

The Social Health Plan highlights the potentiality of increasing the quality of health services by the application of the FSER (Fascicolo Sanitario Elettronico Regionale, i.e. Regional Electronic Health Record). Further, the analysis of national laws relating to FSER brings out a need to develop a joint project between the Region and Local Health Authorities in order to achieve by 2014 the necessary infrastructure. Because of these purposes, it is considered essential the convergence of all active e-health initiatives in order to achieve these aims as quickly and economically sustainable.

The expected Project achievements represent a useful tool for Veneto Region administration to reach the mentioned objectives, in particular they will raise a major awareness of eHealth benefits in end users (health managers, IT professionals,...) that may be directly involved in the Project activities, thanks to the exchange of experiences with colleagues from other EU countries.

Local Health Authority of Asolo

The Local Health Authority n.8 Asolo is located in the Province of Treviso and has almost 250.000 inhabitants spread over 30 different municipalities. This Authority has the duty to provide hospital and primary care to the resident population. Assistance is provided through 2 hospitals (in Castelfranco Veneto and in Montebelluna) for a total of 800 hospital beds. The two hospitals employ 2.600 people (of whom 270 are physicians and 800 nurses) and primary care is provided by 200 General Practitioners and Paediatricians. The 2 Hospitals provide every year 33.000 inpatients admissions and about 3.500.000 outpatient consultations (excluded accesses to the Emergency Room). 
The Local Health Authority N°8 Asolo has been involved in the last 10 years in the development of eHealth services in the Veneto Region and participated in numerous projects in this area at regional, national and international level and in particular to HEALTH OPTIMUM (HEALTHcare delivery OPTIMisation throUgh teleMedicine) during both the Market Validation (2004-2006) and the Initial Deployment (2007-2009) phases. 
In the last few years ULSS N. 8 Asolo has participated in the activities of the ENISA Network (European Network and Information Security Agency). This consists in a study, funded by the European Commission, to enhance the capability of the European Union, the EU Member States and the business community to prevent, address and respond to network and information security problems. In order to achieve this goal, ENISA is a Centre of Expertise in Network and Information Security and is stimulating the cooperation between the public and private sectors.

The Veneto Region chose the LHA of Asolo as its representive in the Sustains project that represents a sort of pilot site to test in advance the usability and adoption rate of some online services that are supposed to be part of the future regional EHR.