Italian Health card

The Italian National Health Service (SSN – Servizio Sanitario Nazionale) registration issued to non-EU foreigners will remain valid until the expiry of the permit to stay.

The Health card is a personal document issued to individuals entitled to benefit from the Italian National Health Service. The card contains several information, such as the biographical data and the tax identification number. It shall be valid for 6 years or until the expiration of the residence permit. In the case of changing your GP in a region other than that of residence, the validity will be one year. Also, for new-borns, at the time of assigning the tax code, a Health Card is sent with a validity of one year.

What is a Tessera Sanitaria ?

The Tessera Sanitaria is the Italian Health Insurance Card which can also be used as a replacement document for the tax code, that all residents need to show to access the Italian National Health Service. You will need it when going to a doctor, purchasing a drug in the pharmacy and used to record the purchase of drugs to be taken as a tax deduction, doing blood analyses, undergoing specialist examinations, diagnostics or requiring admission to a public hospital.
The Tessera Sanitaria (Italian Health Insurance Card) is not required for seeing a private doctor, either a general practitioner or a specialist, and to buy medications or to do blood tests prescribed by a private doctor.

The Tessera Santaria is not required for seeing a private doctor, either a GP or specialist, and to buy medications or to do blood tests prescribed by a private doctor.

Can I access Health care with an Expired Tessera Sanitaria?

As specified by the Revenue Agency, in the guide published on 1 February 2021 , even in the event of the expiry of the health card, it is possible to access the services of the NHS in Italy. It can be used as a replacement document for the tax code used in pharmacies for the electronic registration of deductible purchases in the tax return. However, if you are travelling abroad you can not use it. You will need to request for a new one by contacting ASL (Local Health Office) who will issue you a replacement by giving you the European Health Insurance Card.

How do I renew my Italian Health Insurance Card?

The first thing to keep in mind is that to apply for the health card, you will need to already be a resident in Italy with the permesso di soggiorno (stay permit) to prove it. Before the expiration date, a new Card is automatically produced and sent for all subjects with active health care. The Inland Revenue(Agenzia Entrate) sends the Tessera Sanitaria to the taxpayer’s address but there are cases where this does not happen. You can immediately request renewal from the ASL(Local Health Office) or at any office of the Revenue Agency and ascertain the reason why it was not delivered to your residential address. The reasons why it was not delivered to you could be any of the following reasons:

  • Error in the communication of the tax code
  • Failure to register with the ASL
  • Change of residence

The ASL will temporarily issue you with a replacement certificate to be used until the valid document is delivered. They will also immediately notify the Health Card System of the renewal request and electronically send the assistance data to the TS System. The new valid health card will be delivered to the home address associated with the applicant’s tax code .

To renew the health care, you must bring to the ASL (Local Health

  • Your Passport
  • The documents confirming the request for renewal of the permit to stay, such as the receipt you get when you pay at the post office or the one issued by the Questura
  • Your Codice Fiscale (Italian Tax Code).
  • A certificate of residence or a self-declaration of residence in which you state to live at your current address.

How to check the issue and delivery status of the health card

To check the issuing status of your Card without going to the appropriate offices, the application ” To see the status of my Health Card “ is available on the internet  .

To carry out this verification it is necessary to have your own tax code.

  • If no Health Card is issued, the TS System message is “There are no Health Cards”: it is necessary to contact the competent ASL
  • If it appears that the status of the Health Card is “being issued”, it is necessary to wait for the production and shipment to be completed.
  • If it appears that the status of the Health Card is “Sent” and it has not yet been received, it is necessary to contact any office of the Revenue Agency to verify the correct registration of your residence.

What to do in case of theft, loss or deterioration of the Health Card

If the Health Card is lost or stolen or is damaged or illegible, it is possible to request a duplicate on the website of the Revenue Agency at ScelModalita.jsp , or by contacting to your ASL or any office of the Revenue Agency.

In cases of theft or loss, the current legislation does not provide for an obligation to report to the competent authorities which, however, is a precautionary measure for the client.

The duplicate can also be requested by means of a specifically delegated person; in this case, the delegated person must show his / her own identity document and a copy of the applicant’s identity document, both of which are valid.

Citizens residing abroad can request a duplicate by contacting the Italian Consulate in the country of residence. The Card will be delivered, optionally, at the domicile in Italy or at the same diplomatic representation abroad.

I would like to hear from you: What are your thoughts on this subject. You can share your thoughts and experiences with me and others in the comments section below!

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