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Unforeseen medical treatment - Italy


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Ministry of Health

Treatment & costs


  • 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.


  • 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 a 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 hospitals 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.


  • 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 accident at work or occupational disease, hospital treatments and medicines are provided by the SSN/ASL on behalf of INAIL.


  • 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

  • Same rules as for ambulance.


There are no reimbursements. You will only be charged your individual share of the costs.

If you have had to pay for care, contact your national health insurance provider once you return home to seek reimbursement.

In case of accident at work, contact the closest INAIL office for prostheses and other special benefits.



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