Unsurprisingly, many international medical practitioners choose to work in Italy, a country famed for its cultural wealth, culinary delights, and breathtaking scenery.This article is your best guide if you wish to immigrate to Italy as a doctor for EU or non-EU countries. You may make your ambition of becoming a doctor in Italy a reality with our help as we guide you through the complicated immigration process.

Can a Foreign Doctor Work in Italy?

Can I move to Italy as a doctor? Yes. To immigrate to Italy as a doctor, a foreign physician’s qualifications must be validated, their Italian language skills must be demonstrated, they must have a job offer, they must obtain the appropriate visas and permits, and they must comply with any additional licensing requirements set forth by Italian authorities before they can legally practice medicine in the country.

How to Work and Immigrate to Italy as a Doctor

Are Doctors in Demand in Italy?

There is a demand for medical professionals in Italy, especially in rural areas and some medical subfields. However, the need for medical professionals in Italy might fluctuate, so it’s important to stay up-to-date by consulting reliable official sources.

What Doctors Are in the Highest Demand in Italy?

Regional and specialty differences in Italy’s need for medical professionals exist. However, certain medical professions are in constant demand due to the country’s healthcare requirements.

  • General Practitioners (GPs)
  • Surgeons
  • Anesthesiologists
  • Emergency Medicine Physicians
  • Geriatric Medicine Specialists
  • Radiologists
  • Psychiatrists
  • Oncologists
  • Pediatricians
  • Nurses and Nurse Practitioners

Required Medical Degree to Immigrate to Italy as a Doctor

To be recognized by Italian authorities, the medical degree needed to immigrate to Italy as a doctor must meet certain conditions. More specifics on the medical degree needed to immigrate to Italy are provided below.

  • Degree Equivalence. You must have a medical degree recognized in Italy, specifically the “Laurea Magistrale in Medicina e Chirurgia.” This equivalency is crucial in proving that your academic credentials are on par with those required by the Italian medical system.
  • Accreditation. The country’s regulatory bodies must recognize and approve of the medical school from which you received your degree. If you want your medical degree to be respected, you must study at an accredited institution.
  • Curriculum and Duration. Your medical degree program’s scope and length should be commensurate with what is required in Italy. Six years of full-time study are typically required to earn a medical degree, and that time is spent in both classroom and clinical settings.
  • Clinical Training. You should be required to complete a significant amount of clinical training as part of your degree program. The development of clinical competence relies heavily on this type of clinical training.
  • Official Documentation. We require you to submit valid paperwork and transcripts to verify your medical school credentials. These papers need to be notarized and translated into Italian.
  • Good Standing. You must prove that you are an accredited medical school graduate in good academic and ethical standing.

How to Work and Immigrate to Italy as a Doctor?

To immigrate to Italy as a doctor, you must follow a series of steps and meet specific requirements. Here’s a general guide on how to immigrate to Italy as a doctor:

Step 1. Qualification Recognition

Verify that Italian authorities will accept your medical credentials. This procedure ensures that your medical degree from abroad is recognized as equivalent to one earned in Italy. For details on the recognition procedure and necessary paperwork, please contact the Italian Ministry of Education, Universities, and Research or the appropriate regional medical board (Ordine dei Medici).

Step 2. Language Proficiency

Prove your fluency in the Italian language, which is required for working as a doctor in Italy. You may want to take an exam like OET or IELTS to demonstrate your command of the English language.

Step 3. Secure a Job Offer

Find a healthcare facility in Italy offering you a position, then move there. You can’t begin the immigration procedure until you have a job offer. Verify that the job description and requirements match your skills and interests.

Step 4. Work Visa

Contact the local Italian consulate or embassy to apply for an Italian work visa. In most cases, you must submit paperwork like a job offer, evidence of your qualifications being recognized, and similar items. Your employment status and intended length of stay will determine the sort of work visa you will need. Contact the consulate for help determining which visa category applies to your situation.

Step 5. Residence Permit

If you plan to stay in Italy beyond your work visa, you must apply for a residence permit (Permesso di Soggiorno). Your nationality and the type of work visa you possess will determine the specifics of the application process for a residence permit. You can get information on how to proceed and what paperwork is needed from the immigration or police headquarters (Questura) in your area.

Step 6. Licensing and Registration

Suppose you want to practice medicine in Italy. In that case, you may need to take and pass the Italian Medical Board exam (Esame di Stato) or fulfill other license criteria specific to the location in which you want to work. You must join the local medical association (Ordine dei Medici) to practice medicine in a given area.

Step 7. Supervised Practice (Tirocinio)

Doctors who are not citizens of the European Union (EU) may need a transitional period of supervised practice called “tirocinio” to learn the ropes of the Italian healthcare system.

Step 8. Continuing Education

Maintaining your medical license requires participating in CME and other professional development events.

Step 9. Legal and Administrative Compliance

Comply with all immigration and medical practice administrative standards established by Italian law.

Step 10. Seek Legal Advice

Given the intricacy of Italy’s immigration laws and licensing requirements, you may want to contact an attorney or someone else versed in the specifics of medical immigration to Italy.

Immigrate to Italy as a Doctor

Qualification Recognition for ED Doctors and Non-EU Doctors

Whether a doctor is from an EU (European Union) country or not, there can be substantial differences in the qualification recognition process in Italy:

For EU Doctors:

Due to a mutual recognition of qualifications among EU member states, it is often easier for EU doctors to practice in Italy. Typically, it goes like this:

  • Automatic Recognition. Italian law generally grants automatic recognition to the medical credentials of EU doctors. They are widely recognized as being comparable to medical degrees earned in Italy.
  • EU Directive. EU Directive 2005/36/EC defines common standards for the recognition of professional credentials within the EU and governs the recognition procedure.

For Non-EU Doctors:

It can be more difficult and time-consuming for doctors trained outside of the EU to have their credentials recognized in Italy.

  • Equivalence Assessment. Non-EU doctors often pass an examination process to ensure that their international medical degrees are equivalent to Italian requirements. In Italy, the Ministry of Education, Universities, and Research often carries out this evaluation.
  • Additional Examinations. To practice medicine in the EU, non-EU doctors may need additional exams or tests to prove their competence.
  • Supervised Practice. Before receiving full recognition, non-EU doctors may need to complete a period of supervised practice under the supervision of a licensed Italian physician.

Registration Process for EU Doctors

To immigrate to Italy as a doctor and lawfully practice medicine, doctors from the European Union must first register to do so. Doctors from other European Union (EU) countries can learn more about the registration procedure by reading the following:

  1. Contact the Italian Medical Council. Doctors from the European Union need first contact the Italian Medical Board, or “Ordine dei Medici” for short. You should contact the local Ordini dei Medici in the area where you hope to find employment in Italy.
  2. Documentation. All EU doctors must show identity, medical licenses, and proof of good standing in their home countries. An Italian translation and notarization may be required for these papers.
  3. Fluency in Italian Language. EU doctors may have a linguistic advantage, but they may still have to prove their competence in Italian if their training was not delivered in that language. Depending on location and council, there may be a need to demonstrate language competency through testing or interviews.
  4. Application. Make an application to the appropriate Ordine dei Medici for registration. All needed materials, such as proof of language proficiency and application costs, must be submitted alongside a complete application.
  5. Evaluation. The Italian medical board will examine your application and supporting materials to determine your qualifications to practice medicine in Italy. Given the potential length of this review, you should begin it well before your desired start date.
  6. Registration. Your registration with the Italian Medical Council will be finalized once your application has been accepted. You will be issued a registration certificate to legalize your medical practice in Italy.
  7. Continuing Education. As part of the requirements for licensure, doctors in the EU may be expected to engage in CME activities. Participating in such events helps medical professionals maintain high competence and knowledge.

How To Obtain An Italian Medical License as a Non-EU Doctor?

To immigrate to Italy as a doctor, doctors from outside the EU must obtain a license before lawfully practicing medicine in Italy. An outline of the licensing procedure for doctors from outside the EU is as follows:

  1. Qualification Assessment. To practice medicine in Italy, non-EU doctors must have their credentials recognized. It is customary for the Italian Ministry of Education, Universities, and Research to conduct this evaluation. The procedure entails carefully examining your academic and professional credentials to see if they are up to par with the standards set by Italy.
  2. Language Proficiency. The ability to use the Italian language is essential. To prove they can interact with patients and colleagues, non-EU doctors must take and pass exams like the Occupational English Test (OET) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).
  3. Supervised Practice. A period of supervised practice, commonly known as “tirocinio” in Italian, is sometimes necessary for non-EU medical professionals. During this time, you will receive hands-on experience and familiarize yourself with the Italian healthcare system while working under the supervision of a qualified Italian physician. Your qualifications and the region in Italy will determine the length and specific criteria of the supervised practice.
  4. Licensing Exam. After gaining experience in a supervised setting, non-EU doctors may be required to take and pass the “Esame di Stato,” the Italian medical board test. This all-inclusive test evaluates your medical know-how, hands-on expertise in the clinic, and familiarity with Italian medical norms and procedures.
  5. Registration. If you’ve passed the required exam and want to practice medicine in Italy, you must register with your area’s medical board (Ordine dei Medici). You can’t legally practice medicine on your own without first becoming registered.
  6. Continuing Education. Non-EU doctors are frequently subject to the same requirements for CME and PD as their EU counterparts to keep their licenses current and relevant.

Is Italy a Good Place for Doctors?

Italy can be an attractive workplace for medical professionals as a country rich in history and culture. Doctors’ preferences, specializations, and geographical locations all have a role in determining how well a given treatment works for them. When deciding whether or not Italy is a good area to practice medicine, you should consider things like the demand for your specialization, the working circumstances, and the quality of life.

How Much Does a Doctor Make in Italy?

A doctor or physician in Italy can expect an average annual salary of about 8,420 euros. The lowest average pay is 3,150 EUR, with the highest average salary being 14,500 EUR.

  • In Italy, doctors with two to five years of experience typically earn 32% more than those with less than two years of experience in any field.
  • Doctors with more than five years of experience typically earn 36% more than those with fewer than five years of experience.
  • At the ten-year point, your compensation will increase by 21%, and at the fifteen-year mark, it will increase by 14%.

Immigrate to Italy as a Doctor from the USA

To immigrate to Italy as a doctor from the US, you must first have your credentials recognized, find a job offer, obtain a work visa, and satisfy Italy’s license criteria. Learning about and mastering the country’s unique immigration and licensing procedures is crucial.

Immigrate to Italy as a Doctor from India

Recognizing your qualifications, proving your language skills, finding a job, getting a work visa, and meeting any other license requirements required by Italian authorities are all necessary steps on the path to immigrate to Italy as a doctor from India. Find out what has to be done in your particular case by doing some research.

Immigrate to Italy as a Doctor: Let’s Recap

Moving to Italy as a doctor is a rewarding choice because of the country’s exceptional potential for personal and professional development. If you’re dedicated and well-informed, you can realize your goal of becoming a doctor in Italy.


How long does it take to recognize foreign qualifications in Italy?

The time it takes to get acknowledged can change, but count on it being a few months. Getting a head start can help you finish on time.

Is it mandatory to speak Italian fluently to practice medicine in Italy?

The ability to speak Italian is necessary. You’ll need to prove your language skills to communicate with patients and coworkers on the job.

Are there specific regions in Italy with more job opportunities for doctors?

Medical employment outlooks may differ from one area to the next. The number of available jobs tends to be higher in larger cities like Rome, Milan, and Florence.

What types of visas are available for foreign doctors in Italy?

Visas can be obtained for various purposes, from education jobs. Which one is necessary for your needs is context-specific.

Can my family accompany me when I immigrate to Italy as a doctor?

You can bring your loved ones to Italy with you. Visas and permits will also need to be arranged by you.

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