Last stop at the Institute of Technology of the tour organized by the Gedi group with the XIX Century. The role of hospitals and home care at the center of the debate with doctors and managers
Genoa – You can’t see the sea, you can’t see the San Giorgio bridge from the building leaning against the Morego hill, which was created to house the Genoa mechanographic center of the Ministry of Finance: tax returns and tax files. Fifteen years ago the Italian Institute of Technology was born, where, as the scientific director Giorgio Metta recalls, «the optimism of research and technology wins». And where did the first national tour of the “Festival di Salute”, organized by Gedi which touched Rome, Turin, Trieste and Padua. The last stage, live streaming on the Secolo XIX website and all the newspapers of the group, could only end in the capital of science and research: between the return to the future and the medicine of tomorrow, the silent protagonist was Covid which with its lesson has shown that the current model of healthcare is outdated. A turning point is needed, as emerged from the debate coordinated by the head of the Health Hub Gabriele Beccaria.
Synergy with hospitals
The manager Giuseppe Profiti, who led the Bambin Gesù of Rome and now has to organize the change of pace of the Ligurian healthcare for the Region, has no doubts: “After a hundred years, Covid has made us understand that the healthcare model must be changed all over the world. It is a challenge that we must accept quickly: the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (Pnrr) helps us a lot, allocating resources which, however, are well spent: research and clinic must be increasingly linked “. Starting also from the projects of the IIT which works in synergy with San Martino, Gaslini and Galliera to bring research on medicine and robotics out of the confines of laboratories and IT centers. “The medicine of the future is predictive and personalized – remarked Profiti who has a project to bring the IIT scientists ever closer to the doctors who work in contact with the sick – If we can collect data on one or more people, we will be we will soon be able to understand what the best therapy will be, but we will also be able to predict which pathologies he may have and therefore prepare the best response. It is not a question of resources, they will not be infinite, but there are: if we are able to be efficient, our health care will become sustainable. The focus of assistance must be the territory: we must give the first and most important answers to people at home ».
In the last year, at Gaslini, an international excellence for paediatrics, something has already moved as underlined by the general manager Renato Botti. «We try to be ever closer to the Ligurian territory with some telemedicine projects in the maternal and child field. By the way, we have millions of data that we can make available to the NHS for better care, not only in hospitals, which, as Covid has shown, will have to be more flexible and in relationship with the territory: at Gaslini we can already see the first results of the collaboration with the ASL, but we are only at the beginning and soon there will be other services for families ».
The role of hospitals
Hospitals no longer have to be at the center of a system that has disproportionate costs but is often unable to meet the needs of those who are ill. “Covid – explains Angelo Gratarola, head of the Ligurian health emergency – has taught us that we need tools, structures and above all people for home care and keep patients away from hospitals, where they only have to go for serious illnessesthe. Nurses can guarantee high quality home care and become the link with family doctors who have to regain possession of their clients: in recent years they have been transformed into prescription bureaucrats. For decades the territory has been forgotten, it must be repopulated with health centers and services for the people. Now those who are not well go to the emergency room where they are examined and treated at all hours of the day and night. This model of healthcare has been sunk by Covid: in Lombardy there are hospitals that have collapsed and we in Liguria have kept but we have come close to collapse “.
The pandemic has paralyzed, slowed down or interrupted the prevention and treatment of cancer, starting with surgery. Lucia Del Mastro, oncologist and university lecturer at San Martino denounces this. “In 2020 in Italy between 50 and 70% fewer cancers were diagnosed on average than in 2019, precisely because people did not show up: 6 thousand fewer cases of breast cancer and the same number of colon cancer. We will have more advanced diagnoses, more complex treatments and unfortunately also deaths. What has happened serves as a lesson: cancer treatment must be protected more and people should not be afraid to come to the hospital for a screening ».
Now even cancer research passes through technology: “We are already planning some virtual clinical trials at an international level: the analysis of health data can improve care and help research: this is the future”. Which also passes from the Iit.