How Italy just made it easier to download the Covid-19 ‘green pass’

A Covid-19 'green pass' will soon be necessary to access many public spaces in Italy. File photo: Pascal POCHARD-CASABIANCA / AFP
After complaints of technical difficulties, the Italian government has updated its Covid certificate website with new options for people trying to download proof of vaccination, recovery or testing.

As Italy prepares to extend the use of Covid-19 health certificates, which will be required to access a host of public spaces in Italy from August 6th, reports abounded of residents finding themselves unable to download the document through no fault of their own.

EXPLAINED: When, where and why will you need a Covid health passport in Italy?

The government had promised that anyone who was vaccinated, tested or recovered from Covid-19 in Italy would automatically be sent an authorisation code that would allow them to access their certificate online – but with less than a week to go until the document becomes more important than ever, many people were still reporting that were still to receive their code.

Meanwhile people who were vaccinated in Italy but aren’t enrolled in the public health service were also having difficulties accessing their records without a tessera sanitaria, or Italian healthcare card.

In the past few days, the Italian government has updated its official certificazione verde (‘green pass’) website to provide solutions for people who find themselves with either of these problems.

You can now retrieve your authorisation code online

While people still waiting on a text or email with their so-called AUTHCODE previously had no option but to contact the Health Ministry’s helpline – with no guarantee of a response – they can now go online to request the code themselves.

The official website now includes an option to retrieve the code by going to this page and entering the following details:

  • Codice fiscale (tax code)
  • Tessera sanitaria number
  • “Type of event” – vaccination, recovery or test
  • Date of vaccination/recovery/test

Your AUTHCODE will be displayed immediately, allowing you to use it right away to download your certificate (find full instructions here). 

This option is only available to people who are enrolled in the Italian health service, however, since it requires the number of a valid tessera sanitaria.

People vaccinated without a health card no longer need an authorisation code

People who managed to get vaccinated in Italy despite not being signed up for public healthcare – no mean feat – now have the easiest way of all to download their green pass.

Unlike users who have a tessera sanitaria, people outside the public system can now request their pass using nothing more than their codice fiscale and the date they got their shot. Go to this page and select the option ‘Utente non iscritto al SSN vaccinato in Italia‘ (‘User not enrolled in the National Health Service vaccinated in Italy’). 

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This simplified option does not work if you are enrolled in Italy’s National Health Service, nor if you click ‘Utente senza tessera sanitaria‘ (‘User without a healthcare card’). 

Nor can you access your certificate of recovery or negative test certificate this way: if you are outside the National Health Service and are claiming the green pass through either of these routes, you will still require a code from either the test provider or the doctor who treated you.

Read more about how to download your green pass in those circumstances here

Paper certificates remain valid until August 12th

If all else fails, the European Commission has recommended that paper certificates of vaccination, recovery or negative test results should continue to be accepted until August 12th. 

That means that you should still be allowed to show your proof of immunisation issued by a vaccination centre in Italy, a medical certificate from your doctor or a print-out of your test results as a health passport when the new rules come into force from August 6th – even if it does not contain a QR code.

Be aware, however, that individual operators checking certificates in Italy may not be aware of the EU’s recommendation and might insist you show a QR code. If you’re eligible, it’s advisable to download the standardised, QR-enabled version as soon as possible.

Photo by Denis LOVROVIC / AFP

People who have a certificate from another country in the EU or Schengen Zone, or one of these five countries outside the bloc, do not need to download the Italian version of the pass: certificates from your home country will be accepted in Italy.

Find the latest updates in our green pass news section and further details on the official website (currently only available in Italian).

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