Responding to an invitation by Pope Francis, four Catholic healthcare institutions in Italy have agreed to pool their resources in the areas of research, care, and medical training.
The agreement, which was signed on Wednesday in the presence of Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, aims to boost cooperation in order to provide people affected by various diseases with scientifically advanced therapies.
Present at the Holy See's Secretariat of State were the heads from all four of the institution: the Bambino Gesù Paediatric Hospital, the Agostino Gemelli University Polyclinic Foundation, the Gemelli Isola Tiberina Hospital, and the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart.
Creating innovative models of healthcare
According to a press release, the four institutions "identify with the values that characterize Christian-inspired healthcare and intend to provide concrete responses to the solicitations of Catholic institutions and the current evolving context of healthcare.”
Speaking during the signing ceremony, Cardinal Parolin expressed the Holy See’s hopes for the collaboration agreement, which he said fits well with the work of the Pontifical Commission for Activities of the Health Sector of the Public Legal Persons of the Church.
"We hope to produce results to ensure the best care for all people,” said the Cardinal. “I also express my satisfaction with the goal of promoting effective and innovative models in the field of university education for the benefit of younger generations of university students.”
The Collaboration Agreement seeks to respond to Pope Francis' invitation on 13 April 2023, launched during his audience with members of the Association of Religious Socio-Health Institutes (ARIS).
The Holy Father invited Catholic healthcare institutions to bear witness to their founding values with "a competent and limpid management, capable of combining research, innovation, dedication to the least and a vision of the whole," and to have "the courage to get together and network, eschewing any competitive spirit, uniting skills and resources."