Health services


Emergency

For medical emergency call 113.

Health care

In Norway, public health services are divided into two sectors: Primary health care deals with general health issues and is provided locally by general practitioners and community nurses. The specialised health care sector provides health services by specialists and hospitals. Appointments with specialists and hospitals require referral from a primary health care provider. For more in-depth information about Norwegian health care services see The Norwegian Board of Health (helsetilsynet.no).

Finding a doctor

Specialist treatment

  • If you need treatment by a medical specialist, e.g. cardiologist, ophthalmologist, gynaecologist, contact your regular GP or an other primary health care doctor who will refer you to a specialist.
  • For dental care, see chapter below.

Hospital treatment

  • You can be referred to a hospital by your regular GP or an other primary health care doctor. If you are referred to a hospital, you can choose which one you would like to be treated at. See Free Hospital Choice Norway (frittsykehusvalg.no) for further information on treatment capabilities at hospitals across the country.
  • In an emergency, you can go to the nearest Emergency Clinic (legevakt). See Oslo Legevakt (oslo.kommune.no) (Norwegian) for more information.

Health insurance

When employed by a Norwegian employer

  • Anyone formally employed by a Norwegian employer automatically becomes a member of the Norwegian National Health Scheme as of the first day of work.

When not employed by a Norwegian employer

  • Foreign nationals staying in Norway for less than 3 months without formal employement by a Norwegian employer are considered tourists and must have their own travel insurance. EU/EEA nationals should also bring their European Health Insurance Card.
  • Citizens from a non-EU/EEA country staying in Norway for 3-12 months may apply for voluntary membership in the Norwegian National Health Scheme (NNHS) upon arrival in Norway.
  • Citizens from a non-EU/EEA country staying here for more than 12 months will automatically become members in the Norwegian National Health Scheme (NNHS) once they register with the Norwegian Population Registry (Folkeregister).
  • Citizens from Nordic countries (Denmark, Sweden, Finland, or Iceland) are entitled to coverage of medical expenses in cases where medical condition necessitates immediate treatment. It is important to register with the Norwegian Population Registry (Folkeregister) if you will be living in Norway for more than 6 months.
  • Citizens from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland are entitled to coverage of medical expenses in cases where medical condition necessitates immediate treatment. Present your valid passport when seeking treatment.
  • Citizens from EU/EEA countries, who present an European Health Card (ec.europa.eu), will be given medical treatment in Norway in cases where medical condition necessitates immediate treatment.

Patient user fee

A patient user fee (egenandel) is required when consulting a doctor. If your patient user fees exceed a certain limit (egenandelstak), you may ask the National Insurance Office for an exemption card (frikort) (helsenorge.no) (Norwegian) that entitles you to free health care for the rest of the year.

Therefore, it is important that you keep a record of all your patient payments on a patient user fee receipt card (kvitteringskort for egenandeler). This card is available at doctors and pharmacies. Under the following circumstances medical treatment is free of charge:

  • When you are admitted to hospital and are a member of the National Insurance Scheme, you do not pay for treatment, medication or hospital accommodation.
  • Expectant mothers do not pay for pregnancy check-ups.
  • Children under the age of 12 do not pay any medical user fees, and anyone under the age of 18 who requires psychological help does not have to pay any treatment fees. Fees required for children under the age of 16 may be added to the fees of a parent.

Dental care

  • The Public Dental Care Service provides free services for children up to the age of 20. Dental care for adults is mainly private.
  • For dental emergencies contact Oslo Kommune Tannlegevakt (oslo.kommune.no) (Norwegian), Schweigaardsgate 6, 3rd floor (Galleriet). The clinic can also be contacted by phone 22 67 30 00. Check its website for opening hours.
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Published June 11, 2010 7:56 AM - Last modified Mar. 9, 2017 10:15 AM