The Essential Levels of Care (Livelli Essenziali di Assistenza, LEA) are the services and benefits that the National Health Service (NHS) is required to provide to all citizens, free of charge or upon payment of a participation fee (ticket), with the public resources collected through general taxation (taxes).
The Istituto Superiore di Sanità (ISS, the National Institute of Health in Italy) provides methodological support for the analysis of techniques, procedures and health services to be introduced in the essential levels of assistance. In particular, the ISS participates in the National Commission for the updating of the LEAs and the promotion of appropriateness in the NHS, envisaged by the 2016 stability law (Law no. 208/2015) and established by ministerial decree of 16 June 2016 e further modifications.
The purpose of the Commission is to ensure that the essential levels of assistance are updated continuously, systematically, based on clear rules and scientifically sound criteria.