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     Gale obtained medical coverage as soon as she became a resident of Rome and showing she was married to an Italian citizen.  Italy has a socialized medical system.

     There are private hospitals and insurance available.  Insurance and the private hospitals are just like in the US in terms of cost.

     The first thing you do is pick a GP.  You see your GP for general medical issues.  He will also write scripts to see a specialist. Visits to the GP cost you zero.

    Gale's medical treatment has been way above what she had experienced in the US.  Most Americans will find the system frustrating as hell.  Thing is it works.

     Our total outlay for medical in any year does not break $750.00 out of pocket vs over 13,000 in the US.  

     The cost can be driven up going to an English speaking private clinic. It is faster, wait time for an appointment is usually a day.  We have found a specialist group within the system only two minutes away with short wait times, a couple of days in most cases. The English speaking doctors are now only for emergency type situations. 

     The national system does have co-pays for visits to a specialist and for tests that will range from a couple of euro up to as high as €90.  

     Prescriptions have a small co-pay based on the drug, most have no cost.  The difference is they come in a box, you need to understand when it is written by the doctor the use.  Folks here are use to reading the information in the box for directions. There is no bottle with your name and dosing information.  Prescriptions once needed in the US for certain medicines are unnessary in Italy.  Several are sold over the counter. 

     In Italy when you have a test, you pick up the results and you carry it to the doctor that ordered it.  You start a book with your medical history that can be carried with you to the doctor.  This way he can look at your history while you are seeing him.  It is a system that works despite the fact it seems backwards to most in the US.

     The key to the system is understanding how it works. If you understand how Italy works --- you will have no problems with the system.

     Do not want to wait for a test? You can go to a private clinic for testing.  How expensive?  A CT Scan outside the system cost €125,00 vs the national system where it has a small co pay.  The nice thing is no pre approval for tests or drugs. If ordered the orders are filled.

     How about the cost of the 11 day hospital stay Gale had back in 2018, all the testing, transfer between hospitals when released was exactly zero.  The one thing we had to pay for was a copy of all the records pertaining to her stay and tests results for her nuerology team to review and file away in the big book.  The cost €20,00.


    Bottom line— 


     Gale has a team at Sant’Andrea Hospital for her CIDP.  Her team is led by the head of the Neurology Department, Professor Giovanni Antonini.  We can text anytime with questions, concerns and they will respond with answers.  She sees them every 6 months. 

     Gale's condition CIDP is recognized as a rare disease. She has a CIDP code of RF0180. She is given a higher priority in the system. She also has been given invalidity at 85% and full disability due to mobility by INPS, the Italian social security agency. She also has the code of C03. The result - She has no medical cost or co pays unless she goes outside the system.

      One thing to remember—your appointment will not be on time— maybe as late as two hours in starting unless it is a scheduled test.  The reason is the doctor and team will take the time to ask questions, let you ask questions and then they also take the time getting to know who you are. None of this get you in and out in a flash.

Text Box: Medical