FOR MEMBERS

EXPLAINED: How to get a Covid-19 vaccine booster shot in Italy

Over-40s will be able to get a third dose of the coronavirus vaccine from December 1, 2021.
Over-40s will be able to get a third dose of the coronavirus vaccine from December 1, 2021. ANDREAS SOLARO / AFP
From December, Italy will offer coronavirus booster shots to everyone aged over 40. Here’s what we know about how you can access yours.

Anyone over the age of 40 in Italy will be eligible to receive Covid-19 booster shot from December 1st, as Health Minister Roberto Speranza said on Wednesday the government would extend eligibility to a further 15 million people. 

READ ALSO: Italy to offer Covid booster jabs to all over-40s from December

Over-60s, the immunocompromised and medically vulnerable, health workers, the staff and residents of care homes, and those who received the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine are among the categories already eligible to receive a third dose.

Administering booster jabs to as many people as possible is “absolutely strategic for our vaccine campaign,” Speranza told Italian media, amid concerns about rising infection and hospitalisation rates around Europe.

The process of getting a booster shot varies around Italy, but here’s a look at the information available at this stage..

Start with your regional health authority’s website

The first step is to visit the website of your regional health authority and see what information is available there.

Italy’s healthcare system operates on a regional rather than a national level, so getting a booster in Tuscany will be a different process to getting one in Lombardy.

Some regions require appointments, while others allow walk-ins; some allow pharmacies to administer the vaccine, while others require you to go to a vaccination hub. Several regions make use of a national platform for booking shots, while some ask you to use their own platform.

The Tuscany health authority’s website, for example, has clear instructions on how to book an online appointment for your booster shot depending on which category you fall into.

In Basilicata, by contrast, no appointments are required and residents can walk in to any vaccination hub on the day to receive their shot, provided they have their tessera sanitaria (Italian health card) with them.

A medical worker vaccinates a patient with a dose of the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine at the Museum of Contemporary Art "Castello di Rivoli" near Turin on May 27, 2021.

A medical worker vaccinates a patient with a dose of the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine at the Museum of Contemporary Art “Castello di Rivoli” near Turin on May 27, 2021. Marco BERTORELLO / AFP

READ ALSO: Where to register for a Covid-19 vaccine in your region of Italy

As boosters aren’t yet available to people below the age of 60 (unless they fall into one of the other categories listed above), if you’re younger than this you may need to keep checking your health authority’s website until specific instructions appear for your age group.

Bear in mind that although over-40s are allowed to receive a third jab from December 1st, your local health authority might still be vaccinating people in higher-priority categories at that point, in which case you may need to wait to access your booster.

Regardless of where you live, you’ll need to wait six months until after your last shot in order to receive a booster.

Here are the relevant webpages for each Italian region:

Abruzzo: Third dose information here.

Autonomous Province of Bolzano: Third dose information here.

Autonomous Province of Trento: Third dose information here.

Basilicata: Third dose information here.

Calabria: Third dose information here.

Campania: Third dose information here.

Emilia Romagna: Third dose information here.

Friuli Venezia Giulia: Third dose information here.

Lazio: Third dose information here.

Liguria: Third dose information here.

Lombardy: Third dose information here.

Molise: Third dose information here.

Marche: Third dose information here.

Piedmont: Third dose information here.

Puglia: Third dose information here.

Sardinia: Third dose information here.

Sicily: Third dose information here.

Tuscany: Third dose information here.

Umbria: Third dose information here.

Valle d’Aosta: Third dose information here.

Veneto: Third dose information here.

People wait to receive a dose of the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine at the Museum of Contemporary Art "Castello di Rivoli" near Turin on May 27, 2021.

People wait to receive a dose of the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine at the Museum of Contemporary Art “Castello di Rivoli” near Turin on May 27, 2021. Marco BERTORELLO / AFP

If you can’t find the relevant information online, ask your doctor

If you can’t see the information you need about boosters on the regional authority’s website, it’s a good idea to contact your family doctor or local pharmacist to see what they can tell you about accessing the jab.

In the Lombardy region, it is already possible to get a third dose from some pharmacies and this may soon happen in other regions.

If you don’t have an Italian health card, call up your health authority or vaccination centre

As was the case with the initial round of vaccines, it’s difficult to book a booster without a tessera sanitaria (Italian health card) and codice fiscale (tax code) – but, as readers showed with first doses, it’s not impossible.

The websites for most regional health authorities require patients to input their tessera sanitaria and codice fiscale numbers in order to make an online booking.

That means that if you don’t have one, you’ll likely need to make a phone call to either your regional health authority or directly to a nearby vaccination centre to see how they can help you.

READ ALSO: How to try to get a Covid-19 vaccine without a health card in your region of Italy

If you don’t speak Italian, it will be helpful to ask someone who does for assistance so they can help explain your situation.

If you experience pushback, you should:

  • Refer operators to the guidance from Italy’s medicines agency AIFA, which says that vaccination is open to “All persons residing or otherwise present on the Italian territory, with or without a residence permit or identity documents, including holders of the STP (Stranieri Temporaneamente Presenti) or ENI (European Non Iscritto) code, holders of the numerical tax code Codice Fiscale or those without one, holders of an expired health card and those who fall into the categories periodically updated by the Vaccination Plan”. Have the page ready on your smartphone: find the link in Italian here.
  • Refer operators to Ordinance 3/2021 from Italy’s Covid-19 Emergency Commission, which states: “each Region or Autonomous Province should proceed to vaccinate not only its resident population but also people domiciled on regional territory for reasons of work or family necessity, or any other justified and proven reason that requires their continuous presence in the Region or Autonomous Province.”


Member comments

  1. Morning,
    Being a part of Italian culture in Roma the last 5 years, being a foreigner it was kinda easy to get the Pfizer booster at Termini. All you need is your Codice Fiscale card, your American CDC shot record and passport. The hardest part was waiting on the call center for 40 minutes before I verified what was needed and when. Foreigners can only get the booster jab weekdays after 14:00. Out of six pharmacies near the US Embassy, only one knew the procedure so this will save you lots of time and effort.! Be well and stay safe all.)))

  2. In Lazio the problem is that the hotline is busy 24/7, it’s impossible to get through to a human and reserve the booster without a tessera. I plan to go directly to the vax center at Termini and ask if they can help me.

Become a Member to leave a comment.Or login here.
Privacy