BRUSSELS and INNSBRUCK, Austria, June 26 /PRNewswire/ --

- Italian Data Highlights Importance of Non-Financial Drivers in Reimbursement Context

- German Research Finds Only 25 Percent of Medical Devices Accepted Under the NUB System are Integrated Into the G-DRG System Within Two Years

One of the questions the European Health Technology Institute for Socio-Economic Research (EHTI) hopes to answer is whether national financing systems affect the adoption rate of technological innovations in different countries in the EU. In this light, the Bocconi University in Italy and the Technical University Berlin (TUB) in Germany are today presenting the results of research concerning the German and Italian reimbursement situation especially for innovative technologies at the European Health Management Association's (EHMA) annual conference in Innsbruck, Austria.


The research carried out by Bocconi University focuses on how reimbursement mechanisms for medical devices impact the introduction of Drug Eluting Stents (DES) in Italy. Although all Italian healthcare providers with time display an increased adoption of DES, considerable differences in adoption can be noted from one provider to the other. The research by Bocconi University indicates that funding and reimbursement mechanisms do not significantly contribute to this overall increase. These findings are in line with recent international research and point to the important role of non-financial drivers such as exchange of experiences amongst hospital managers and physicians.

The findings presented today provide an important pool of knowledge, not only for healthcare service providers, but also for those most affected by the distribution of innovative products - patients, Prof. Rosanna Tarricone, Executive Director of EHTI, says. Moreover, these results will show policymakers to what extent financing mechanisms promote the adoption of innovative medical technology and provide a solid foundation for future evidence-based policies, Prof. Tarricone concludes.


The research by the TUB concentrated on the path of an innovative product to potentially become covered by the German Statutory Health Insurance (SHI). The Neue Untersuchungs- und Behandlungsrichtlinien (NUB) (New Examination and Treatment Methods) system implies an efficient and prompt access to innovative medical devices. However, the NUB system only acts as an intermediate step in the integration of innovative products into the regular German Diagnosis Related Groups (G-DRG) system.

Only about 25 percent of medical devices accepted under the NUB system are integrated into the G-DRG system within two years and even after four years some products are still considered innovative. This means that the NUB system provides no guarantee that products will eventually benefit from being covered by the SHI. The EHTI proposes that innovative procedures which are accepted as NUB would be required to be evaluated so that sickness funds in Germany potentially may be more willing to pay for them. Moreover, if these innovative procedures prove to be more efficient than then current ones, they may be integrated into the G-DRG system more quickly, Prof. Tarricone, suggests.

About EHTI

EHTI is realising the potential of medical technology in Europe by filling the research gap, enabling policymakers to make informed decisions that vastly improve systems' efficiency and quality of life for all. In doing so, the Research Institute also aims to build strong partnerships among leading figures in academia, industry and government. By mobilising the synergies between these partners, it hopes to enhance the production of top-quality research.


Diagnosis Related Groups (DRGs) is a classification and payment system in which a preset amount is paid for a given diagnosis, regardless of the cost to the hospital or healthcare provider of providing services.

More information Rosanna Tarricone Executive Director +32-493-518-002 rt(at)together4healthinnovation(dot)eu

More information: Rosanna Tarricone, Executive Director, +32-493-518-002, rt(at)together4healthinnovation(dot)eu