Monday, 21 June 2021

More hassle

We were elated to receive our second vaccinations, we came away from the hospital each with a document confirming two doses and imagined accessing our covid passport would be simple.  Wrong.  There are several this can be done, one involving the purchase of a special card reader, another to be certified by an identity identifier or the one that after much research MrFF decided was best, to access SPID, Systema Publico di Identita Digitale.  He assured me this would give us access to not only our health records but tax details and I’ve no idea what else.  I do know he spent a good two hours registering on the post office website and making appointments for us to go to the village post office with our documents.  

So we pitched up this morning, MrFF’s appointment was for 10 mine for 11 but I was determined we would both be processed together, we were.  I don’t understand the appointment system, we just joined the queue to be dealt with by the only person working there though she did ask if we had an appointment when we went to the counter.  She asked for our identity, I handed her my biometric card which she said was no good, it was a permission to stay not ID.  I pointed out it had a photo, date and place of birth, in fact it also holds our finger prints, tax code etc. She said again it was no good and asked for our tax codes.  I handed over our health cards which show our tax codes,  she said she needed the original official tax code card, we have never had one of those.  Then she asked for my passport and finally my driving licence, it’s not the first time my UK driving licence has done the trick.  Suddenly everything was ok, she scanned my biometric and health cards into a machine and tapped away on the computer.  She took our address, mobile phone numbers but faltered at my place of birth. She seemed to have a drop down menu that didn’t include the tiny village where I was born at home.  She asked for the name of the comune, we don’t have those in the U.K. so I said Yorkshire, we wrote it down, she couldn’t find that either. She asked if I was America then asked if maybe I was German, she’d just seen 3 different cards that confirm I am British.  

By now we’d been there 40 minutes, a big queue of people had built up outside, it was getting embarrassing.  So she tapped some more then took MrFF’s documents and processed them much quicker.  She said we would each receive a code on our phones to access the site, we should agree to the privacy policy and create a password to be registered with SPID and strangely enough after we left the codes arrived.

Our next challenge was to go to the hospital for MrFF’s chest X-ray, give me strength.  Oddly it was a quite day at the hospital, they were not doing vaccinations and we met up with Vincenzo the nice doctor who vaccinated us, he offered to help us with the process.  He took us to the cash desks as we expected to pay, first he said we should go back on 01 July for the X-ray.  When Mr FF explained he had an appointment made by phone for 12.30 today he asked for the original doctors prescription, the copy MrFF had on his phone wouldn’t do, but eventually he led us to the X-ray department.  There were two members of staff there, no patients so they took MrFF in immediately, Vincenzo stayed and chatted.  He said we’d get the results straight away, usually the patient has to return at a later date and collect the results to deliver to the doctor.  Sure enough not long after MrFF returned the radiographer produced a file containing a report and a disc. Vincenzo took a look and said there was a mild chest infection nothing to worry about.  

Back home MrFF completed the registration of our SPID accounts and glory be there were our covid passports, in Italian and English. I’m not sure we are much nearer getting back to the U.K. given current testing requirements but it’s one less hurdle.  Surely there can’t be many more we have to tackle but if there are it will be the same information and documents to submit all over again, I’d expect nothing less.


  1. It is stories like this that make me pleased I live in the UK - that's bad enough for beaurocracy but your experience sounds worse. Good luck

  2. No talk of COVID passports here yet but hope, when they are available, they will be easy to obtain. Glad you have yours!

  3. Living in Italy takes a lot of patience.

  4. Oh my goodness, that sounds like a poorly written scene from a comedy sketch!

  5. Everything you have written about Italian bureaucracy makes me in awe of your persistence and patience!

  6. Crikey, the simplest of tasks seem to be made as complicated as possible. It would drive me potty. I do so admire your persistence and patience!