IRCCS: Scientific Institute for Research, Hospitalization and Healthcare

From the Scientific Research Laboratory to Patient Care

The name of IRCCS or technically “Istituto di Ricovero e Cura a Carattere Scientifico” indicates biomedical institutions of relevant national interest, which drive clinical assistance in strong relation to research activities. Their mission is the continuous upgrade of healthcare. The IRCCS title is granted by Italian Department of Health to a very limited number of institutes throughout the nation. They are committed to be benchmark for the whole public health system for both the quality of patient care and the innovation skills in the field of organization.


Recognition as an IRCCS

The Santa Lucia Foundation obtained the recognition of IRCCS in 1992 as the culmination of significant research activity in the field of neuroscience, which especially since the 1980s has been sustained with substantial investment. Today there are 60 research laboratories operating at the hospital facilities in Via Ardeatina in Rome as well as the nearby European Center for Brain Research (CERC). Their activity is divided into 5 Research Lines with a total scientific productivity that places the Santa Lucia Foundation among the leading IRCCSs in Italy and first in the neuroscience sector (see key data).


The Foundation has partnerships in the research sector with over 100 institutions including Universities, Research Centers and other institutions in Italy and abroad, in particular with the University of Rome Tor Vergata, Sapienza University and the Campus Bio-Medico University of Rome. Santa Lucia participates in the IATRIS (Italian Advanced Translational Research Infrastructure) and EATRIS (European Advanced Translational Research Infrastructure in Medicine) networks of Istituto Superiore di Sanità (Italian National Institute of Health) as well as in the network of Neuroscience specialized IRCCSs for which Santa Lucia coordinates the Genomics Platform project.


Historical Background

The origin of Italian IRCCS’s dates back to the 1930's. They were first established by a Royal Decree of September 30th 1938 (nr. 1631). Since creation it is clear the objective of the Republic of Italy to offer centers specializing in the treatment and research of medical issues of special social importance. The first IRCCS's coincide historically with the creation of the United States National Institutes of Health. Their activities are federally regulated by Legislative Decree 288/2003.