Health Care for Foreign Nationals

Health Care for Foreign Nationals

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Health Care for Foreign Nationals

Health care in Italy is available to persons with a valid residence permit and any dependent co-habiting family members. Basic medical care for illness or accident is guaranteed to any foreign nationals who do not have residence permits.

Foreign Nationals registered with the National Health Service (SSN)

Foreign nationals who must register with the SSN are:

  1. those who have a residence permit and are either working or are registered at employment office;
  2. those who have a valid residence permit;
  3. those who have requested a residence permit renewal(for employment, self-employment, family reasons, asylum, adoption, guardianship, citizenship, religious reasons);
  4. those who are dependent family members of the foreign nationals in points 1,2 and 3.

Being registered with the National Health Service (SSN) allows one to: 

  • choose a family doctor and a pediatrician for children;
  • avail of clinic, specialist and home visits (paying the medical care"ticket" charge);
  • be admitted to hospital
  • be vaccinated
  • have blood tests (paying the medical care"ticket" charge);
  • have x-rays (paying the medical care"ticket" charge);
  • have scans (paying the medical care"ticket" charge);
  • buy medication (paying the medical care"ticket" charge);
  • avail of rehabilitation services (paying the medical care"ticket" charge);

Health Care for Foreign Nationals who do not possess a valid residence permit (STP Card)

Persons who do not have a valid residence permit nevertheless have a right to primary health care, even if on a continuous basis. To receive care one must ask for a “Tesserino STP” (Health Card for foreign nationals who are temporarily present) at the health board (USL Office). The STP card has a duration of 6 months and can be renewed.

This card allows the holder to:

  • avail of basic health care;
  • be hospitalised for emergencies and for “day” hospital;
  • receive out-patient and hospital care, of an imperative or essential nature, even if on a continuous basis, for both illness or injury.

NOTE: receiving care does not mean that the public authorities will be alerted. Only in some cases (for reasons of public order or other reasons of a serious nature) will the public authorities be notified, as is the case for Italian citizens.

Medical Clinics for STP Card Holders

The Clinic Roberto Giovannini Health Partners Centre, established in collaboration with the Prato Health Board (Aziena USL 4), offers a health services for foreign national citizens without a valid residence permit. The staff are Caritas (Charity) volunteer doctors.

To have access to services, one must present the STP (Temporarily Present Foreign National) card.

​Health Care for EU Citizens who are not registered with the National Health Service (SSN)

EU Citizens from the European Economic Area and the Swiss Confederation, who find themselves in a socially vulnerable situation and in a state of destitution, and who do not meet the criteria to register with the National Health Service (SSN) can apply for an ENI Card. If unable to pay, due to poverty, they must go to the local ASL office and self-certify that they do not have the required assistance and self-declare their state of destitution.

Out-patient and urgent or essential health care, even of a continuous nature for illness or injury are guaranteed. Preventative and safeguard medical programmes on both an individual and collective level are assured.

In particular, the following are guaranteed:

  • protection during pregnancy and maternity on a par with treatment for Italian citizens;
  • protection for the health of minors;
  • vaccines in accordance with legislation and in line with collective prevention campaigns,
  • international operations for preventative medicine;
  • prevention, diagnosis and care for infectious diseases​
  • prevention, care and rehabilitation services for drug dependence

Services provided to these citizens are free of charge for the patient if he/she is without economic means, except for basic health care fees that are on a par with Italian citizens. 

Helpdesks that issue STP and ENI Cards

For information over the phone, call the Foreign Office: 0574 807121-807122

Last update: venerdì 02 august 2019
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