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Stockholm - Health system

Sweden has a national comprehensive health service which covers medical expenses (doctors'fees, clinical treatment, dental care, medicines etc.) and compensation for absences from work of parents of sick children. To obtain the full service it is necessary to be registered with the Social Insurance Office. Foreigners who are resident and taxpayer in Sweden will be covered by the Swedish Health Insurance.

Expatriates who do not pay taxes in Sweden need a personal health insurance, which is always organized by the company the person is working for and not on an individual private basis.

The Swedish Health Care system

There are three levels of Health services: Primary, County and Regional 

The Primary care sector

has the aim of improving the general health of the people and treats diseases and injuries that do not require hospitalization. Primary care is provided by local medical centers called Vårdcentralen, by family doctor’s surgeries, by private doctors and physiotherapists, by district nurse clinics and by clinics for child and maternity health care.

The Primary care services can organize a medical consultation within 8 days and when necessary a specialist consultation within 3 months.

For children under the age of 7, vaccinations, health checks and consultations as well as certain types of treatment are free of charge at the children’s clinics. Older children receive check ups through their schools.

Pregnant women receive free medical care throughout the pregnancy at the maternity care clinics. You can choose the hospital where you wish to deliver your baby. If the hospital you choose is not in your district, be careful, because you will be admitted only if there is space available. Priority is given to those who live in the area.

Elderly and disabled people can live in their own home since medical services, nursing in the home of the patients and adaptation of houses are taken care of by the municipality. Long term patients in hospitals, in nursing homes and service apartments, have access to nursing in service 24 hours a day.

County medical services

are available at central county hospitals. There are about 80 county hospitals. Here, care is provided in a number of specialist fields such as inpatient care and partly as outpatient care. They also include psychiatric care provided more as outpatient care.

Usually you do not need a referral to obtain specialist hospital-care. You can call for an appointment and go directly to the hospital without going via the primary services.

Regional medical services

are provided at nine regional hospitals which have a greater range of specialist and sub-specialist fields than at county level (neurosurgery, thoracic surgery, plastic surgery and highly specialized laboratories).

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