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EXPLAINED: What people vaccinated in Italy need to do to get the ‘green pass’

If you've been vaccinated in Italy, here's how to access the digital green pass - even if you have not yet received an 'authorisation code'.

EXPLAINED: What people vaccinated in Italy need to do to get the 'green pass'
The new health pass is valid for travel between all EU countries.Photo: Marco Bertorello/AFP

From Thursday July 1st, the EU’s much talked-about Covid travel ‘health pass’ has been in use across the bloc to facilitate quarantine-free travel.

It shows proof via a QR code that the holder has either been vaccinated, recently recovered from the virus, or recently tested negative for Covid. 

Italy launched its version of the digital (and printable) pass on June 17th, and this document is now valid for travel within the EU from July 1st under the international scheme.

TRAVEL: How does the new EU Covid certificate work and how do I get one?

The Italian health pass is also needed when attending large events, and may soon be expanded and required for access to more venues.

As the goverment looks at expanding the scheme however there has been increased concern about access, with widespread reports of people not receiving a access code or having other difficulties using the app.

Here’s a closer look at how people in Italy can get the pass after vaccination.

Note: If you’re looking for information on how people vaccinated in the US can access Italy’s ‘green pass’, see here.

Versions of the health pass from all EU countries are accepted in Italy. Photo: Denis LOVROVIC/AFP

How it works

It should be possible to claim your health certificate 15 days after your first dose of a vaccine (including the Johnson & Johnson single shot), and within 48 hours of your second dose, according to the health ministry’s green pass website.

After vaccination, your green certificate will be automatically issued in a digital and printable format via a national platform run by the Italian health ministry.

The official website says that, once it’s available to download or access, you should receive an SMS or email (at the number or address you provided on your vaccine registration form) containing an authentication code and further instructions.

EXPLAINED: What is Italy’s digital ‘green pass’ used for and how do you get it?

You should in theory be able to use this code to access the certificate itself via either the official website, the IO public administration app or the Immuni contact-tracing app, or by accessing your electronic health records (Fascicolo Sanitario Elettronico, available on your regional health system’s website). 

What if you didn’t receive a code?

The Italian health ministry initially said there may be a delay of up to a week for the codes to be sent out to people who had been vaccinated before the system went live.

“If you have already had the vaccine, when the certification is available you will receive an email or SMS to the number given during the vaccination,” the website states.

However, many of The Local’s readers (and writers) still hadn’t received these codes as of July 1st – two weeks after the scheme launched in Italy, and up to a month after they had received a first vaccine dose.

People who have had their second dose however do appear to be receiving the authorisation code within 48 hours without any problems.

If you have had only had one dose and have not received the code, there does seem to be a way to access the certificate.

We found that on logging in to the official website or apps using an electronic ID, the certificate was in fact available for download.

The system can only be accessed without the missing ‘authorisation code’ however if you have a digital identity document: either the SPID digital ID or an electronic ID card (CIE).

You would not be able to log in without the code using your tessera sanitaria (health card).

To log in, go to either the official website login page, or use the IO public administration app or the Immuni contact-tracing app.

While this is not the procedure outlined by the health ministry on the official website, it worked for several of The Local’s members and writers as of July 1st.

Others however were given a message saying that their certificate was still not avalaible and “would be made available by June 28th”.

The health ministry advises people to contact the green pass helpline for support on 800 91 24 91 (freephone) or email [email protected].

However many readers have reported getting no response to multiple emails, and being unable to get through on this number. The Local has been unable to successfully contact anyone via this email address or phone number so far.

Vaccination centres have been advising people to email the following address with their codice fiscale, date of vaccination and the email address they would like the authoritisation code re-sent to: [email protected]

Alternatively, anyone who has not received their code or cannot otherwise access the pass is advised to contact their doctor or pharmacist, who should be able to dowload the pass on their behalf.

The certificate, once you get it, features a scannable QR code, and you can show it directly on your smartphone or choose to print out a copy if you prefer.

Certificates will remain valid until you get your second vaccine dose (if applicable), and for nine months after you are fully vaccinated.

While Italian authorities will recognise equivalent documents issued in all EU and Schengen zone countries, as well as those from the US, Canada and Japan (more about these requirements here) the Italian version of the pass is only made available to people who were vaccinated in the country, or recovered or recently tested negative here.

Find further details on the green pass official website (currently only available in Italian).

For more information about the current coronavirus situation and health measures in Italy please see the Health Ministry’s website (in English).

Member comments

  1. My wife was not sent the code by the ministry either, but when she was finally able to register for her SPID through Poste Italiane and thereafter to sign onto the Io App, the ministry automatically sent her the green pass QR code on the Io app.

  2. I was vaccinated 2nd dose end May yet still no code available to download my green card. Endless waiting on telephone was frustrating and useless. Today I visited my local pharmacy and received it immediately on presentation of my medical card. If you have a carta sanitaria this is the easiest way to get your green card

    1. I had the same experience . . . endless frustrations until I visited a local pharmacy, presented my tessera sanitaria and they printed a copy of my green certificate. It took less than a minute.

      1. I am wondering if anyone can assist. I do not haev a Carta Sanitaria as I am AIRE citizen. I have received my vaccination however not received my Authcode to download my green pass. I have tried to call and email the help and call them but neither receive a response. I went to the local pharmacy but with out a Carta Sanitaria it doesn’t seem they are able to check on the system as I only have a Codice Fiscale. Does anyone have the same problem and how did they resolve it? Many Thanks

  3. Ok, I’m an American assigned in Italy with military as a us government worker. We have been vaccinated and have a valid CDC cpvaccination card. How do WE ge the green pass??

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Italy allows suspended anti-vax doctors to return to work

Italian heathcare staff suspended over their refusal to be vaccinated against Covid-19 can now return to work, Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni confirmed on Monday.

Italy allows suspended anti-vax doctors to return to work

Italy become the first country in Europe to make it obligatory for healthcare workers to be vaccinated, ruling in 2021 that they must have the jab or be transferred to other roles or suspended without pay.

That obligation had been set to expire in December, but was brought forward to Tuesday due to “a shortage of medical and health personnel”, Health Minister Orazio Schillaci said.

READ ALSO: Is Italy’s government planning to scrap all Covid measures?

Italy was the first European country to be hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic in early 2020, and has since registered nearly 180,000 deaths.

Schillaci first announced the plan to scrap the rule on Friday in a statement saying data showed the virus’ impact on hospitals  “is now limited”.

Those who refuse vaccination will be “reintegrated” into the workforce before the rule expires at the end of this year, as part of what the minister called a “gradual return to normality”.

Meloni said the move, which has been criticised by the centre-left as a win for anti-vax campaigners, would mean some 4,000 healthcare workers can return to work.

This includes some 1,579 doctors and dentists refusing vaccination, according to records at the end of October, representing 0.3 percent of all those registered with Italy’s National Federation of the Orders of Physicians, Surgeons and Dentists (Fnomceo) 

Meloni’s post-fascist Brothers of Italy party railed against the way Mario Draghi’s government handled the pandemic, when it was the main opposition party, and she promised to use her first cabinet meetings to mark a clear break in policies with her predecessor.