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Unforeseen medical treatment - Italy

Emergency

  • Call 118 (free of charge)

    A medical professional will assess the level of urgency and recommend steps to take.

Ministry of Health

E-mail: urpminsalute@sanita.it

Treatment, coverage & costs

Doctors

  • To take advantage of your European Health Insurance Card, you must consult a doctor who is registered with the Italian national health service (Servizio Sanitario Nazionale – SSN).
  • You may be charged a fee for some services. This is not refundable in Italy, but you can always seek reimbursement once you return home.
  • Public SSN surgeries are open on weekdays. Opening hours are usually from the morning to the afternoon. SSN hospital surgeries are open every day for emergencies.
  • If you are in Italy and have an accident at work, you must communicate it to the doctor in the Emergency Room and to the employer so they can report the accident to INAIL (Istituto Nazionale di Assicurazione contro gli Infortuni sul Lavoro).
  • If you think you have an occupational disease, go to the closest INAIL office.

Dentists

  • Most dentists work "privately", meaning they are not under contract with the SSN and do not accept the European Health Insurance Card. You will be charged for their services.
  • In very rare cases, it is possible to consult a dentist at an SSN-operated hospital or a health centre managed by the local health authority Azienda Sanitaria Locale (ASL).
  • In case of accident at work or occupational disease, dentures are provided by INAIL.

Hospital treatment

  • The ASL can supply a list of public SSN and private hospitals that operate under the State scheme.
  • To receive hospital treatment, you do not have to contact the ASL in advance. You must simply show your European Health Insurance Card.

Prescriptions

  • Certain medications do not require a prescription. The pharmacist will be able to tell you this.
  • When you give a prescription to a pharmacist, you also have to show your European Health Insurance Card.
  • Certain medications are free, others not. Any medication fees are non-refundable in Italy, but you can always seek reimbursement once you return home. Over-the-counter medicines are non-refundable.
  • In case of an accident at work or an occupational disease, hospital treatments and medicines are provided by the SSN/ASL on behalf of INAIL.

Ambulance

  • If an ambulance is needed, be aware that any required partial payments (for public ambulances) or full payments (for private ambulance providers) are not refundable in Italy.

Air ambulance

  • The same rules apply as for the ambulance.

Reimbursement

  • There are no reimbursements. You will only be charged your individual share of the costs.
  • If you have to pay for care, contact your national health insurance provider once you return home to seek reimbursement.
  • In case of an accident at work, contact the closest INAIL office for prostheses and other special benefits.
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  • Co-payments in Italy could be required, depending on both the kind of medical service concerned and the Region where the provider is settled.
  • Co-payment is an individual share of the treatment cost which in Italy is called "TICKET".
  • There is neither a general list of medical treatments requiring co-payment at National level nor a general list of tariffs of the same. 
  • Sometimes you can be asked to pay first aid service in case you are not hospitalised after being treated. Specific information in this regard can be asked at the closest competent institution (ASL) of the Region of stay.

Dialysis, oxygen & chemotherapy

Information about the availability should be asked in advance (some weeks beforehand) to the closest competent institution (ASL) of the Region of stay.

Loss of card

Contacts for holders of EHICs issued in Italy

  • You should always report the loss or theft of a card to the police.
  • Contact your ASL (Azienda Sanitaria Locale), which can issue a provisional replacement certificate
  • In an emergency, it can be faxed it or e‑mailed it to the country you are staying.

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