Dialysis treatment abroad

If you need dialysis treatment while you are temporarily staying abroad, you may be entitled to reimbursement for your expenses.

Patient on dialysis machine

There are various ways you can claim reimbursement for the cost of dialysis treatment. This depends on whether you are staying in a country which is within or outside the EU/EEA.

Within the EU/EEA

European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)

If you intend to travel within the EU/EEA and/or Switzerland, you will normally be entitled to claim reimbursement for the cost of dialysis treatment at a public sector hospital in accordance with the legislation of the country in which you are staying. To do this, you must bring your European Health Insurance Card, and you must only pay the same user fee as citizens of the country in which you are staying. You must sign an agreement with a public healthcare provider where you can get dialysis.

If you are a citizen of a country outside the EU/EEA, but resident in Norway, you may not be entitled to a European Health Insurance Card. Nevertheless, you may be able to claim reimbursement for your expenses for dialysis treatment in another EU/EEA country by paying yourself and then applying to Helfo for reimbursement.

Application for reimbursement of expenses if you have not used a health insurance card

To use this scheme, you must be a member of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme. In many cases, the scheme also applies to family members. You are not entitled to a subsidy from Norway for treatment in an EU/EEA country you are regarded as ordinarily resident in.

Click here for important information on who qualifies for the scheme.

When you send an application to Helfo, you must enclose a statement from your doctor stating that you have a long-term need for regular dialysis. Alternatively, the doctor can confirm your need by signing and stamping directly on the application form.

You must also enclose original itemised receipts or an original itemised invoce, along with confirmation of payment for the treatment. 

In order for Helfo to consider the claim and reach a decision, the documentation must be comprehensible. This means that all documentation must initially be in Norwegian, Danish, Swedish or English. You should therefore try to get the documentation issued in one of these languages. If the documents are in another language, Helfo can, if necessary, ask you to have them translated. You must pay for the translation yourself. If you send in a translated document, you must also send in the original.

The reimbursement is limited to the amount the treatment would have costed in Norway. You will never be reimbursed for more than the actual cost of the treatment.

Prior authorisation – a voluntary scheme

You can apply to Helfo for prior authorisation to clarify whether you are entitled to reimbursement of your expenses for dialysis treatment at hospitals within the EU/EEA.  Prior authorisation confirms that you are entitled to reimbursement for the cost of the treatment. You will also be notified of the maximum amount you can be reimbursed. You will still have to pay for the treatment and then apply to Helfo for reimbursement of your expenses.

You must sign an agreement with a healthcare provider where you can receive dialysis treatment.

Outside the EU/EEA

If you are a member of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme and intend to travel outside the EU/EEA area, you must pay for the dialysis treatment yourself and then apply to Helfo for reimbursement afterwards. You cannot apply for prior authorisation.

You must sign an agreement with a healthcare provider where you can receive dialysis treatment.

When you send an application to Helfo, you must ensure that you enclose a statement from a doctor confirming that you have a long-term need for regular dialysis. Alternatively, the doctor can confirm your need by signing and stamping directly on the application form.

You must also enclose an original itemised invoice, along with confirmation of payment for the treatment.

In order for Helfo to consider the claim and reach a decision, the documentation must be comprehensible. This means that all documentation must initially be in Norwegian, Danish, Swedish or English. You should therefore try to get the documentation issued in one of these languages. If the documents are in another language, Helfo can, if necessary, ask you to have them translated. You must pay for the translation yourself. If you send in a translated document, you must also send in the original.

Health care expenses in The United Kingdom

The United Kingdom left the EU/EEA (Brexit) in 2020. This entailed changes in entitlement to have healthcare expenses covered. From 1 January 2024, a new social security agreement between the United Kingdom and Norway applies.

Read more about subsidies for health care in The United Kingdom​​.

Submit your application to Helfo 

Treatment received within the EU/EEA: You must send the application form and documentation to Helfo within 6 months of each treatment date. If you have not settled on the spot but received an invoice afterwards, we calculate the deadline from the invoice date instead of the treatment date. In this context, invoice means the first document relating to the sale transaction issued to you by your treatment provider.

Treatment received outside the EU/EEA: You must send the application form and documentation to Helfo within 6 months of the date the treatment is received and paid for.

Remember to enclose a statement from a doctor, original itemised invoice, and confirmation of payment for the treatment.

 

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

Paper form

If you are unable to use our digital form, you can complete and submit the following form instead:

Send the form to Helfo, Postboks 2415, 3104 Tønsberg.

Power of attorney in connection with enquiries to Helfo

​If you contact Helfo on behalf of anyone else, you must have power of attorney for them.

Parents/guardians must also have power of attorney from any children aged 18 or over. In the case of health information, you must have power of attorney from any children aged 16 or over. This is because the age of majority under health law is 16.

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

Guidance Helsenorge

If you have any questions, please call Guidance Helsenorge: +47 23 32 70 00

Content provided by Helfo

Helfo. Dialysis treatment abroad. [Internet]. Oslo: The Norwegian Directorate of Health; updated Monday, October 2, 2023 [retrieved Sunday, April 14, 2024]. Available from: https://www.helsenorge.no/en/treatment-abroad/dialysis-treatment-abroad/

Last updated Monday, October 2, 2023