Norwegian Health Care and the EHIC
It is important to carry a valid European Health Insurance Card if you are due to travel to one of the countries within the European Economic Area or Switzerland. State provided healthcare is accessible, to those who carry a valid European Health Insurance Card in Norway, in all of the aforementioned countries at a reduced cost or in some cases even for free. Therefore, you are essentially covered for required emergency care and the likes of diabetes and other pre-existing medical issues. European healthcare varies country by country so we strongly recommend that you do your homework on all of the medical related facilities within the country you are visiting. This is particularly important if you require ongoing treatment.
The Scandinavian country of Norway boasts an excellent healthcare system which consistently remains at a very high standard. The Norwegian healthcare system is funded by the public and has very recently been voted eleventh in a poll of the world’s best healthcare systems.
EHIC Entitlements in Norway
People who are visiting the country of Norway and hold a valid European Health Card are entitled to use their public hospital facilities. This also includes clinics and general practitioner surgeries. In some cases, a fee may be charged although sometimes it can be totally cost-free. People who stay in the country for over a year are required to make a financial contribution into the Norwegian national insurance scheme. Each of Norway’s districts will be home to a minimum of at least one pharmacy. All of the pharmacies, within Norway, have copies of schedules readily available. Prescription drugs in Norway are divided in to two classes. One class requires the payment of a nominal fee to access medicines that are usually more common. The remaining class is generally more expensive and is for other kinds of medication. As explained previously, remember to do your homework and prepare for your trip by taking the essentials, such as your European Health Insurance Card, to prevent additional and unexpected costs.
Norway is a country full of different medical institutions and high-standard hospitals. It has an excellent transport infrastructure making travelling and finding medical assistance trouble-free. If you are in an emergency and require urgent medical care, you would need to telephone 113. Police assistance can be reached by dialling 112. The majority of the Norwegian population speak English, so language communication problems should be a rare occurrence when talking with healthcare professionals about any medical issues. Despite this, it is still advisable to carry a phrasebook, containing medical terms, just in case you encounter a healthcare professional who does not speak English.
Norway is generally an expensive country for any tourist, so it would be unwise to increase your holiday bills by adding unnecessary medical bills on top of that. Always carry your European Health Insurance Card so that you can enjoy your time in Norway without having any worries about medical expenses should you be unfortunate enough to fall ill or be involved in an accident during your visit.