(ZENIT News/ Rome, 08.02.2024).- On Thursday, February 8, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Pope’s Secretary of State, and the Under-Secretary of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers, Alfredo Mantovano, signed — at the Italian Embassy to the Holy See –, a Declaration of Intent on the Bambino Gesù Children’s Hospital (OPBG).
In the Declaration, the parties — recognizing the level of absolute excellence of the Bambino Gesu Hospital, in the field of pediatric healthcare and biomedical research at the national and international level — agree that its current facilities, and in particular the historic site of Sant ‘Onofrio, do not allow a further expansion or improvement of their healthcare offering or their research activities. For this reason, the Government of the Italian Republic and the Holy See declare that they have identified the area of the former Carlo Forlanini Hospital in Rome as “one of the most suitable sites for the construction of the new headquarters” of the Bambino Gesù.
The Declaration then outlines a series of objectives that each party undertakes to achieve. Among them is, first of all, the definition of the necessary regulatory architecture that favours the implementation of the interventions and the full economic sustainability of the operation. Secondly, the text specifies the main stages of the operation, that is, the acquisition — for a price to be established — by the Holy See of the area and the building known as the “Forlanini complex” from the Lazio Region; the granting by the Holy See to INAIL [National Institute for Insurance against Accidents at Work] of the surface right, for a period and a value to be agreed between the parties, the construction by INAIL of the new hospital; the leasing by INAIL of the new hospital complex, in exchange for a fee that remunerates INAIL’s investment; finally, the stipulation of an agreement between the Holy See and Italy for the transfer of the immunities provided for in the articles 15 and 16 of the Lateran Treaty to the new premises of the Bambino Gesù.
Hence, the Declaration refers to the beginning of a debate between the parties on the fate of the historic headquarters of Sant’Onofrio, taking into account the current healthcare function of the complex and also providing for the right of first refusal in favor of the Italian State.
The signing of the Declaration took place on the sidelines of the Conference “State and Church 40 Years After the Signing of the Republican Concordat,” dedicated to the Agreement modifying the Concordat, signed in February 1984 by President Benedetto Craxi and the Secretary of State, Cardinal Agostino Casaroli.
Thank you for reading our content. If you would like to receive ZENIT’s daily e-mail news, you can subscribe for free through this link.