Health Matters and Emergency Needs for Cruise Travelers
Hopefully, you will not need any medical assistance whilst on a cruise and calling at the Port of Livorno. Onboard your cruise ship there is always a Medical Centre, with more than competent Doctors and Nurses to take good care of you if you need any medical assistance or care – particularly with a serious situation. You will be charged a hefty consultation fee onboard but if you have a Travel Insurance costs will be covered. Livorno has a number of very good English speaking doctors (specialists) in the rare eventuality that the onboard doctor requires assistance from shoreside and there is a very good and modern Hospital just a couple of miles from the city centre.
However, if you just need some minor over the counter medication that you are used to – be it for yourself or your family - there is no reason to pay an exorbitant amount onboard for a consultation and, additionally, for medication. Pharmacies are very easily identifiable as they always have a big and visible Green Cross outside – the Italian translation for Pharmacy is “Farmacia”. Most pharmacies open between 8:30 am - 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm – 8:00 pm. And some also open on Saturday. The "Farmacia Comunale" is open everyday, 24 hours a day right in the city centre just as you walk from the Shuttle Bus to Piazza Grande.
Typical over the counter medication (available without a medical prescription) in Italian pharmacies include all sorts of pain relievers and soft medication for throat, sinus, chest, nose, eyes or ears BUT NOT antibiotics nor Tranquillizers / Sleeping pills– these are only sold with a medical prescription. However, you will find Homeopathic medication.
Farmacia Galeno Interior
Credit: Owner / Managment
Livorno has a large number of Pharmacies in the city centre – one across the street where the Shuttle bus stops on the way to Piazza Grande. Pharmacists are very helpful, have a sound academic background and most speak good English. The prices for over the counter medication may be discounted if you are a European citizen with public medical coverage. However, generally speaking, this type of medication is much, much cheaper in Italy than in the US (although not as cheap as in the UK).
Pharmacies are also the best place to buy any baby or toddler needs – from baby food to pacifiers as well as nappies (diapers) and all sorts of baby/toddler attire. The cruise traveller will also find a large variety of sundries that may be useful when cruising such as sun creams, insect repellents, plasters and that sort of thing but also cosmetics or sunglasses.