Italy: New guidelines on telemedicine in home-care

In brief

With Decree dated 29 April 2022, published in the Official Gazette on 24 May 2022, the Ministry of Health approved the organizational guidelines on the "Digital model for the implementation of home-care" ("Guidelines"). The Guidelines set out a reference model for the implementation of various telemedicine services in the home-care setting, through the identification of innovative processes for taking care of patients at home and the enhancement of multi-professional and multidisciplinary collaboration between the various professionals.


Key takeaways

  • Among the telemedicine services that could be implemented in the framework of home-care, the Guidelines identify and regulate the "Televisit", understood as the medical act whereby the doctor interacts remotely with the patient and this might result in the prescription of drugs, or further clinical investigations. Televisit is limited to control activities of patients whose diagnosis has already been formulated during an in-person visit. The Guidelines also identify the "Medical Teleconsultation", defined as the medical act through which the healthcare professional interacts remotely with one or more doctors to discuss, also via video call, the patient's clinical situation, based primarily on the sharing, by telematics means, of all clinical data, reports, images, audio-video concerning the specific case; the "Medical-Health Teleconsultation", a healthcare activity, not necessarily medical, carried out remotely by two or more persons and consisting of the request for support during the performance of healthcare activities, followed by a video call in which the healthcare professional provides instructions for making clinical decisions and/or carrying out the correct performance of health activities on the patient; and "Tele-assistance", which is based on the remote interaction between the healthcare professional and the patient/caregiver by means of a video call, and which may be accompanied by the sharing of data, reports or images.

In addition to the above-mentioned services, the Guidelines also deal with "Telemonitoring", which allows the remote detection and transmission of vital and clinical parameters on a continuous basis, by means of sensors interacting with the patient; "Remote patient monitoring", which allows the remote monitoring of the patient; and "Telerehabilitation", consisting in the remote provision of services aimed at enabling, restoring, improving, or otherwise maintaining the psychophysical functioning of persons with disabilities or disorders, or those at risk of developing them.

In general, essential requirements for the activation of the home-care pathway supported by telemedicine tools include the patient's adherence to the same home-care pathway, the suitability and training of the patient, and the structural suitability of the living environment related to the clinical situation, also in relation to the use of the equipment.

Copyright © 2023 Baker & McKenzie. All rights reserved. Ownership: This documentation and content (Content) is a proprietary resource owned exclusively by Baker McKenzie (meaning Baker & McKenzie International and its member firms). The Content is protected under international copyright conventions. Use of this Content does not of itself create a contractual relationship, nor any attorney/client relationship, between Baker McKenzie and any person. Non-reliance and exclusion: All Content is for informational purposes only and may not reflect the most current legal and regulatory developments. All summaries of the laws, regulations and practice are subject to change. The Content is not offered as legal or professional advice for any specific matter. It is not intended to be a substitute for reference to (and compliance with) the detailed provisions of applicable laws, rules, regulations or forms. Legal advice should always be sought before taking any action or refraining from taking any action based on any Content. Baker McKenzie and the editors and the contributing authors do not guarantee the accuracy of the Content and expressly disclaim any and all liability to any person in respect of the consequences of anything done or permitted to be done or omitted to be done wholly or partly in reliance upon the whole or any part of the Content. The Content may contain links to external websites and external websites may link to the Content. Baker McKenzie is not responsible for the content or operation of any such external sites and disclaims all liability, howsoever occurring, in respect of the content or operation of any such external websites. Attorney Advertising: This Content may qualify as “Attorney Advertising” requiring notice in some jurisdictions. To the extent that this Content may qualify as Attorney Advertising, PRIOR RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE A SIMILAR OUTCOME. Reproduction: Reproduction of reasonable portions of the Content is permitted provided that (i) such reproductions are made available free of charge and for non-commercial purposes, (ii) such reproductions are properly attributed to Baker McKenzie, (iii) the portion of the Content being reproduced is not altered or made available in a manner that modifies the Content or presents the Content being reproduced in a false light and (iv) notice is made to the disclaimers included on the Content. The permission to re-copy does not allow for incorporation of any substantial portion of the Content in any work or publication, whether in hard copy, electronic or any other form or for commercial purposes.