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Technology Update
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Digitization in the Italian healthcare sector

16/01/2017

settore sanitario italiano

In recent years, electronic data interchange has undergone significant progress in the healthcare and pharmaceutical sector. In Italy, the great technology switchover took place in 2014, when the Executive began to call for compulsory e-invoicing. And, as in the majority of countries, healthcare companies are closely linked with the Administration, so many of them had to adapt to this requirement.

However, in addition to this link with the public sector, the healthcare market also has other features that helped streamline its digitization. In this area, information security is especially relevant, as highly confidential data are exchanged. In addition, it is necessary to manage a wide variety of products and the market hinges around large supplier and distributor companies, which act as a HUB.

Beyond e-invoicing

The peculiarities defining the health sector have given rise to a spread of paperless working that goes beyond use of e-invoicing in business relations with the Italian public sector. This system is being used in the administrations of other Member States, such as Spain or Portugal, and is due to soon become an essential requirement for international trade, as Directive 2014/55/UE requires all European public bodies to switch over to e-invoicing by November 2018.

In addition, the European Union is calling for processes linked with public procurement to be carried out electronically. In addition to the invoice, this includes other messages such as the order, despatch advice or delivery note. On the road to so-called e-Procurement, Italy and the healthcare sector are leading the way.

Since last June 30, the region of Emilia-Romagna has a dematerialization flow that requires healthcare agencies and their suppliers to exchange their orders and despatch advices in e-format using the PEPPOL standard. . This initiative could soon be repeated in other areas of Italy, such as the Lazio region.

In any case, these breakthroughs, which start in the public sector and initially take hold in the B2G2B scope, eventually end up spreading to B2B relations. This is how massive widespread use of e-invoicing is gradually taking hold throughout the healthcare market, and is foreseeably likely to extend to the use of other paperless business documents.

Technological leap in the health sector

EDICOM is a leading developer of technology solutions for healthcare companies. The Global E-Invoicing platform lets you automate the creation, sending and receipt of electronic invoices, in compliance with the requirements of over 60 countries around the world. The solution is integrated with your in-house ERP or management system and ensures connectivity with any public agency, thanks to the Public Administrations HUB, or private enterprise, through the EDICOMNet VAN.

This experience and global capabilities have enabled EDICOM to lead a project promoted by the European Commission to encourage e-invoicing in the health sector. Companies taking part in the initiative will receive funding to cover up to 75% of the costs involved in rolling out this technology. You can find out more about the GOVEIN project here http://okessays.com/

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