Health Insurance & Medical Information
While Italy has a socialized healthcare system, participants of SRISA are required to have health insurance coverage for the duration of their program.
It is important to check with your medical provider and insurance company to understand what expenses incurred in Europe are covered. We recommend that you purchase short-term travel insurance to supplement your current medical plan. Travel insurance covers these four basic areas:
- Medical/health problems
- Property loss
- Trip cancellation/interruption
- Emergency evacuation
Companies that have had positive feedback from students and local health providers include , AXA, and CISI. Whereas, we have heard negatively about ISOS from our partner healthcare providers in Florence. With mental health becoming a larger consideration for more and more people, we advise that you ensure the policy you choose covers mental health support while abroad as well.
Local Italian Health Insurance
Students studying for semester programs are required to have health insurance coverage in Italy for the application of their Permit of Stay. Students should check with their current health insurance plan to see if it includes travel abroad. If it doesn’t, they may purchase a travel insurance such as those described above (recommended) or local Italian Health Insurance (valid all around the Schengen Area). One such local plan is through Paffer. This plan covers students should they need to take a trip to the Italian emergency room (pronto soccorso) and may be used for minor issues as well as real emergencies, but usually not for private practices.
Medications and Doctors Visits
Students requiring special medications should carry them in their original pharmacy containers as well as bring the written prescription itself. Do not have medicine shipped to Italy, as it will be promptly stopped in customs. If students are not able to bring enough medication to last their entire stay, they should have the written prescription to take to a doctor in Florence to process a local Italian prescription for additional medication. We recommend taking care of this immediately upon arrival.
There are 24-hour pharmacies in each section of the city and a nearby tourist clinic with English-speaking physicians. The normal charge is about 50-75 Euro per visit.