Networks as a way to hospital and primary/ community care integration: findings from a narrative review of the main international models

Marcello Di Pumpo1, Lorenzo Sommella2, Gianfranco Damiani1,3

1 Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Rome, Italy
2 Fondazione Policlinico Universitario Campus Bio-Medico, Rome, Italy
3 Fondazione Policlinico Universitario A. Gemelli IRCCS, Rome, Italy

Healthcare systems are complex systems. Achieving financial, social, and environmental sustainability of these systems requires a high degree of integration and coordination at all levels, especially between acute-care settings and primary/community care services. Some authors have, therefore, suggest redirecting integrated healthcare research towards the network theory and network concepts as a useful lens.

The current paper proposes to investigate the existence, the institutional level of formalization and the degree of development of hospital/primary-community care Networks currently present in the main types of healthcare systems worldwide by studying an appropriate selection of representative countries for each system typology.

Materials and Methods
A narrative review of the scientific and gray literature following the methodology by Green et al.