Contract specialists

Contract specialists are practising specialists, doctors or psychologists, who receive an operating subsidy from the public sector.

Contract specialists (avtalespesialister) assess and treat conditions that do not require hospitalisation, similar to hospital outpatient clinics.

In order for you to be entitled to benefits from the National Insurance scheme, the contract specialist must have an agreement with Helfo regarding direct settlement. You need to clarify thisbefore the examination and treatment starts. The contract specialist is obliged to inform you before the treatment starts if he or she does not have a direct settlement with Helfo, so you will know whether or not you have to pay the entire bill yourself. This obligation follows from section 6 of the Health Personnel Act. 

Referral to a contract specialist

Contract specialists offer assessment and treatment if you have a referral from your GP or other healthcare professional with referral rights.

Without a referral, the specialist’s service contract does not apply, and you have to cover the cost of treatment yourself.

User fees for consulting a contract specialist

​If you are referred to a contract specialist, the user fee you have to pay will be the same as for treatment at a public hospital. A user fee (egenandel) is an out-of-pocket expense paid by the patient, and is covered by the exemption card scheme (frikortordningen).

A patient fee (pasientbetaling) is a different type of expense payable by the patient, and is not covered by the exemption card scheme. This means that patient fees are not included in the amounts totalled for an exemption card, and that they have to be paid in full by the patient.

If any medical devices or supplies are used as part of the treatment, the size of the patient fee depends on whether you consult a contract specialist or a public hospital. The regulations governing contract specialist services set out differentiated patient fees depending on the type of devices or supplies used.

List of contract specialists

Contract specialists have individual contracts with the regional health authorities. For a list of all contract specialists, please consult the individual websites for each regional health authority (information in Norwegian):

Content provided by Helfo

Helfo. Contract specialists. [Internet]. Oslo: The Norwegian Directorate of Health; updated Wednesday, June 21, 2023 [retrieved Sunday, May 26, 2024]. Available from:

Last updated Wednesday, June 21, 2023