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An Expat Talks about What is Was Like Having a Baby in Alghero, Italy

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Alghero

How recently did you give birth in the country that you are reporting on?

February 2010

Describe your experience giving birth there. What type of facility did you go to? What (if any) type of pain management did you use? How long did you stay in the hospital? Was it a positive experience? Etc...

I gave birth in Ospedale Civile, it had been recommended to me by my gynecologist for having a low c-section outcome, other local hospitals are apparently quick to opt for them when a labour is progressing slowly.

It is an old hospital and I shared a room with 3 other women. The babies are kept in a nursery and brought to the Mums for feeding only. There were a number of shared bathrooms however they were all very shabby and small. I had to take my own toilet roll, cups, water but I knew this in advance.

I wanted a natural birth but presumed pain relief would have been available (after speaking to my mother in law), in fact they refused to give me anything despite being in labour for over 24hrs, I had been admitted as my baby was 10 days over due. Eventually a c section was required but I know for me there was no other option and the staff tried everything they could to deliver naturally.

Altogether I spent 6 days in hospital,because of being admitted, but normally only 4 days is required after a c section or 3 after a normal birth.

For me it wasn't a very positive experience, it was my first baby and I don't speak fluent Italian, when my labour started I wasn't moved to a private room, when the evening came my husband was told to go home and come back in the morning and that I should try to sleep which is not easy when you're having contractions every 5 minutes, they wouldn't break my waters until the morning which meant my labour progressed very slowly, the c section was fine, however my husband was not allowed to enter and when they took the baby out I wasn't allowed to see him so I had to wait a further 2 hours.

However, the gynecologists and midwives were all very nice and friendly but the nurses were brilliant.

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How did you choose your doctor, midwife or other type of medical professional?

I used the local consultorio familiare, I really like the gynecologist and midwife who worked there, they were both excellent and very thorough. I don't believe in paying for a private gynecologist when there is a state health service.

If you were to have another child in this country, would you do anything differently in terms of preparation and/or the delivery?

I would have another baby here but I would want to avoid another c section so would have to try and find a hospital which is prepared to try for VBAC, otherwise I know exactly what to expect.

If a friend of yours living in the same country were expecting, what advice would you give her?

Ask the hospital what pain relief is available, try and speak Italian.

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Dual Citizen & Residency or Not (1 reply)

I've been reading through old posts here and on the Americans Living in Italy FB group, trying to find out some information for when we have more time to spend at our holiday home. I apologize for the long question, but better to have it in one place and there is a wealth of experience with this group! We won't retire from teaching for about 7 years, but will have a home there now and hopefully dual citizenship by the time we retire. My sincere thanks for any clarification anyone can share about my questions!!! 1. DH is working on JS. Once acknowledged, I can begin the JM application. If we are both dual citizens, are we required to notify the comune of our presence if we are just staying in our own home for an extended vacation LESS than 183 days? The only thing I've read that would make registering as a resident important is for the purchase of a car. I'm not worried about the medical benefit right now. 2. As we would be registered in AIRE, we don't want to have to register as a resident at the comune, then unregister when we head back to the US if we are staying less than 183 days per year. I don't think it makes sense to go back and forth like with residency. It sounds like registering with the comune cancels your AIRE registration, and we would have to reregister again with AIRE upon our return to the US. 3. I have read that as citizens we can register our home as a primary home in Italy though AIRE, which would reduce our IMU. Anyone have experience with this? Can this be done if only one homeowner has citizenship, or do we need to wait until the JM process is complete (which I know can take up to 4 years)? 4. If we decided to stay longer, and haven't registered, how does the Italian government know of our presence if we aren't residents? We are NOT planning to cheat the system, but how would they track us? It seems from what I've read that whether or not we are registered residents, the 183 day rule would apply. 5. I know that if DH is not a registered resident, I would not be allowed to stay longer than 90 days until the JM process is complete and I have an Italian passport, correct? 6. If we decided to declare residency and stay longer than 183 days, we are subject to income tax on our teacher pensions as citizens of Italy, (but as foreign residents that particular pension is not taxable), our withdrawals from our 403b accounts, and a tax foreign bank accounts. I think we would need to ay a wealth tax on our home in California, but I'm unclear if there is a difference on this wealth tax if we are foreign residents or citizen residents. What is the tax rate for foreign held real estate? Are the property taxes paid on our home in California deductible from the wealth tax we would pay in Italy? We might sell, but the wealth tax on the value our home near San Francisco could be affect our decision to keep our home or not.

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Rental Contract (22 replies)

We are in the process of applying for elective residency and juggling all the balls in the air, so to speak seems a bit of a challenge. As I understand it one must first obtain a rental contract prior to the visit to the Italian consulate in the US. 1 - Are landlords/owners willing to give rental contracts contingent upon successfully obtaining an ER Visa. 2 - Did you pay the deposits, realtor fee and first months rent upon issuance of the contract but during this waiting period? I understand it can take up to 90 days for the VISA to be granted. and the hold your passport so if one were to rent prior to and pay first month rent, fees, deposits anticipating a successful granting of the VISA you could not travel to use the property while waiting, is that so? Can anyone explain in detail how they navigated this illogical process? Can one apply for Elective residency while in Italy?

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What do you need to buy a car in Italy? I am an American driver planning to move to Italy within 24 months and would like to buy a car. I am also a Irish citizen Don't speak Italian (yet) What is my easiest path to buy a car in Italy? Thanks in advance!

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Comments about this Report

guest
Mar 21, 2011 11:45

Can you have your baby in a private hospital in Italy? If yes, how does it work?

Cigna Expat Health InsuranceExpatriate Health Insurance

Get a quote for expat health insurance in Italy from our partner, Cigna Global Health.
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Healthcare-in-ItalyHealthcare in Italy

An overview of the healthcare system in Italy - public and private hospitals, Servizio Sanitario Nazionale (SSN), getting your Tessera Sanitaria (healthcare card), vaccinations for Italy, prescription medication availability and more.

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To seek a university hospital and or doctors associate with one. To ask the locals for references.

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An expat in Italy discusses health care, pharmacies and health insurance costs. She explains that the cost of health insurance is nominal compared to the US and prescription medicine is very inexpens

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Get established with a local doctor before you actually need one--you will need a primary car doctor to refer you to specialists.

healthcare surveyAnswer Questions about Healthcare in Italy

Help others moving to Italy by answering a set of questions about health insurance, public healthcare in Italy, prescription medicine, quality of medical care and emergency services.

Having-a-Baby-In-ItalyExpats Talk about What it's Like Having a Baby in Italy

Read recent baby reports submitted for Montesilvano, Pescara and Genoa.

If you're an expat parent who had a baby abroad, write a report about your childbirth experiences to help other expecting expat parents.

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