Childbirth in the EU/EEA and Switzerland

If you are a member of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme and give birth while you are staying in another EU/EEA country or Switzerland, some of your costs may be covered, regardless of whether or not you planned to give birth abroad.

Midwife holding baby

Emergency childbirth

If you give birth before your due date while you are staying in another EU/EEA country or Switzerland, your costs can in principle be covered in accordance with the legislation of the country you are staying in if you present your European Health Insurance Card. The healthcare provider centre where you give birth must be affiliated to the public health service.

Applying for coverage of expenses if you have not used a health insurance card

If you have paid for the treatment yourself, either because you did not use a European Health Insurance Card or because you gave birth at a private healthcare centre, you can retrospectively apply to Helfo for reimbursement of your expenses.

To be entitled to reimbursement, you must normally be a member of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme. If Helfo considers you to be resident in another EU/EEA country, you will not be able to claim reimbursement from Helfo for treatment received in your country of residence. Click here for important information on who qualifies for the scheme.

Planned childbirth

If you wish to travel to another EU/EEA country in order to give birth, some of your costs may be covered. You cannot claim reimbursement for expenses for planned childbirth in Switzerland.

You must pay for the healthcare service you receive and then apply to Helfo for reimbursement afterwards.

You must reach your own agreement with a maternity care provider in the country you are travelling to.

Prior authorisation – a voluntary scheme

You can apply to Helfo for prior authorisation in order to clarify whether you are entitled to reimbursement for expenses for a planned birth in the EU/EEA. Prior authorisation confirms that you are entitled to reimbursement for the cost of the maternity care. You will also be informed of the maximum amount you can claim.

With the application, you must enclose confirmation that you are pregnant, e.g. by means of a health card for pregnant women. You must also submit an offer for maternity care from the maternity unit (hospital, birth centre, midwifery unit) where you plan to give birth.

Even if you are granted prior authorisation, you must still pay for the treatment and then apply to Helfo for reimbursement.

Read more about prior authorisation on the page entitled “Hospital treatment and other specialist health services in EU/EEA countries”.

Longer stays in another EU/EEA country or Switzerland

If you intend to stay for an extended period of time in another EU/EEA country or Switzerland before or after childbirth, you should make sure you are entitled to coverage for the childbirth and other healthcare services for you and your child.

You should check whether you are entitled to an S1 certificate from Norway. Read more about who is entitled to an S1 certificate and how to apply for one (see steps 2, 3 and 4).

With an S1 entitlement certificate, the childbirth and other healthcare services for you and your child will be covered according to the rules in the country you are staying in.

The healthcare you and your child receive must be part of the public healthcare system in the country you are staying in. You must pay the same user fees as the citizens of that country.

Students

If you are a student in an EU/EEA country or Switzerland and are a member of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme, you must show your European Health Insurance Card in order to give birth at a public healthcare centre. The Health Insurance Card must also be used in connection with antenatal checks, etc.

Find out more about membership of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme for students in the EU/EEA or Switzerland.

The costs you incur in connection with pregnancy and childbirth will be covered in accordance with the rules in the country in which you are staying. For this reason, it is important to note that the services provided to pregnant women vary from country to country.

If you have paid for the treatment yourself, either because you did not use a European Health Insurance Card or because you gave birth at a private healthcare centre, you can retrospectively apply to Helfo for reimbursement of your expenses.

Apply to Helfo for prior authorisation

You can apply to Helfo for prior authorisation to clarify whether you are entitled to reimbursement for expenses for a planned birth in the EU/EEA.

Log in to Helfo's digital form

Log in to Helfo's digital form and apply for prior notification or a refund of expenses (only in Norwegian)

You will find useful information about submitting digital forms her (in Norwegian).

Paper form

If you are unable to use our digital form, you can send us a paper form instead. Don’t forget the documentation!

Complete and post the following form to Helfo, PO Box 2415, 3104 Tønsberg:

Apply to Helfo for reimbursement

Forms and documentation must be submitted to Helfo within six months from the date of maternity care. If you did not pay for the treatment on the spot, but received an invoice afterwards, we will determine the deadline from the date on the invoice instead of the date of treatment. In this context, ‘invoice’ means the first payment request/first demand for payment sent by the maternity care provider. 

You must ensure that you have the original, itemised invoice and confirmation of payment of the childbirth expenses. The reimbursement is limited to the amount that childbirth would cost in Norway.

Log in to Helfo's digital form

Log in to Helfo's digital form and apply for prior notification or a refund of expenses (only in Norwegian)

You will find useful information about submitting digital forms here (in Norwegian).

Paper form

If you are unable to use our digital form, you can send us a paper form instead. Don’t forget the documentation!

Complete and submit the following form to Helfo, PO Box 2415, 3104 Tønsberg:

Power of attorney for Helfo enquiries

If you contact Helfo on behalf of someone else, you must have power of attorney.

Parents/guardians must also have power of attorney from children over the age of 18. In the case of health information, you must have power of attorney from children over the age of 16. This is because the legal age of majority for healthcare is 16.

Fill in the power of attorney form and send it to Helfo as an attachment to the digital form, or send it by post to Helfo, Postboks 2415, 3104 Tønsberg. Remember to enclose a copy of valid identification for the person granting the power of attorney.

Contact Guidance Helsenorge

Contact Guidance Helsenorge if you are not sure whether you are entitled to a European Health Insurance Card or coverage for healthcare services abroad:

  • Telephone: +47 23 32 70 00
  • Fax: +47 33 34 73 73

Content provided by Helfo

Helfo. Childbirth in the EU/EEA and Switzerland. [Internet]. Oslo: The Norwegian Directorate of Health; updated Tuesday, April 23, 2024 [retrieved Sunday, June 16, 2024]. Available from: https://www.helsenorge.no/en/treatment-abroad/childbirth-in-the-eu-eea-and-switzerland/

Last updated Tuesday, April 23, 2024