Students in the EU/EEA and Switzerland

This page explains your health rights as a student in another EU/EEA country or Switzerland.

Woman carrying books and a cup

Illustration: Morten Rakke / Helfo

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Membership of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme

Anyone studying in another EU/EEA country or Switzerland may be entitled to reimbursement for their expenses relating to health services both in the country in which they are studying and in the country in which they are considered to be resident.

You must normally be a Norwegian citizen or the citizen of another EU/EEA country in order to be entitled to reimbursement for your expenses relating to health services, but students who are family members of an EU/EEA citizen, stateless persons and refugees may also have the same entitlement.

As a student, you must be a member of the National Insurance scheme of the country in which you are considered to be resident. If you are considered to be resident in Norway before you leave the country in order to study, you will normally still be considered as being resident in Norway even if you are studying abroad.

There are exceptions, however. You may for example be considered to be resident in the study country if your immediate family members live there with you. Other factors which may be of importance include where you receive your student finance from, the duration of your stay and how much time you spend in Norway.

To find out where you will be considered as being resident, you should check with the relevant National Insurance institution in the study country or the Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration (NAV).

You will normally lose your membership of the Norwegian National Insurance scheme if you take work of any kind in the study country. You should then contact the National Insurance institution in the study country in order to find out whether you are covered by the National Insurance scheme there. If you are not covered by this scheme in the study country, you should contact NAV to find out whether you are a member of the Norwegian National Insurance scheme.

Read more about membership of the National Insurance scheme on NAV's web.

Note that specific rules apply in the following countries: Bulgaria, Estonia, Czech Republic, Greece, Italy, Cyprus, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Hungary (in Norwegian).

Example

Emma takes a one-year MBA course in Paris. Her immediate family members are resident in Norway, she receives financial support from the Norwegian State Educational Loan Fund (Lånekassen), and she does not work alongside her studies. Emma is considered to be resident in Norway, and she retains her membership of the Norwegian National Insurance scheme.

2

Your rights

If you are considered to be resident in Norway, you will retain your membership of the Norwegian National Insurance scheme while you are studying. In this case, you should take a European Health Insurance Card from Norway with you.

This will entitle you to the same essential health services in the study country as if you were a citizen there. Read more about the European Health Insurance Card.

In some countries, you will be asked for your student identity card in addition to your health insurance card if you wish to receive planned treatment.

In the Nordic region, students will be registered in the national registry of the study country and will therefore have access to health services without having to show their health insurance card. In the Nordic region, there is also no requirement for you to be a citizen of an EU/EEA country or Switzerland.

If you cannot use the European Health Insurance Card

If a treatment centre will not accept your European Health Insurance Card or you have forgotten to take it with you, you must pay your expenses yourself and apply to Helfo for reimbursement afterwards (see the next step). If you have left your card at home, you can ask Helfo for an emergency form. Read more about this on the page about the European Health Insurance Card.

Students who are a citizen of a country outside the EU/EEA or Switzerland

If you are a citizen of a country outside the EU/EEA or Switzerland and you are a member of the Norwegian National Insurance scheme, you will have the same rights as citizens in the EU/EEA or Switzerland during your study stay in the Nordic region. The same applies to stays in Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Hungary and Austria.

If you intend to study outside one of the countries mentioned above, you should find out whether you are entitled to the European Health Insurance Card. If you are not entitled to this card, you should check with NAV whether you will retain your membership of the Norwegian National Insurance scheme while you are studying. You may be entitled to extended benefit in the study country in the same way as students outside the EU/EEA if you retain your membership as a resident abroad. You must document your membership if you apply to Helfo for reimbursement.

Example

Emma has broken her arm and visits a public hospital in Paris. She shows her European Health Insurance Card and has to pay the same user fees as a French citizen.

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Apply to Helfo

If you incur expenses relating to health services during your study stay, you can apply to Helfo for reimbursement.

Example

Emma fills out the application form and send this together with all relevant documentation to Helfo within six months of the treatment date.

Send the application to: Helfo, Postboks 2415, 3104 Tønsberg, Norway

Veiledning helsenorge.no

If you have any questions, please call Veiledning helsenorge.no (user service): +47 23 32 70 00

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Power of Attorney over Helfo communications

To contact Helfo on behalf of someone else, you need to have power of attorney.

Parents/guardians also require power of attorney for children over 16. This is because the age of majority for health matters is 16 years. 

Health records and information are sensitive and should not be transmitted by e-mail. We therefore request that you send the power of attorney to Helfo by letter post. Remember to enclose a copy of valid identification.
Complete the power of attorney form and send it to Helfo, Postboks 2415, 3104 Tønsberg.