, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp 279-286

Italian Drug Policy: Ethical Aims of Essential Assistance Levels

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Abstract

In 2001 the Italian Government defined Essential Assistance Levels (LEA), which can be considered as an important step forward in the health care system. The Italian health care system would provide payment of essential and uniform aid services in order to safeguard many values such as human dignity, personal health, equal assistance and good health practices. The Ministry of Health has worked to rationalize the National Formulary and to define evaluation methods for drugs in order to choose what to reimburse without penalizing the rights of the individual and society.

This paper describes how this job of rationalization was done and tries to illustrate the choices made in Italy by the use of two meaningful examples (statins and rivastigmine).