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Health Care in Denmark

Hi,

How public health care system works in Denmark ? Does patient pays for in part or total cost of inpatient, outpatient, dental, prescription drugs, eye care from his/her pocket or its all paid by govt. from tax collections ?

Regards

Ankit

Hi Ankit (:

I'm Danish, so you can trust me on this.
If you're from the EU, you get exactly the same health care as the Danes. I'm pretty sure it's the same for people coming from outside of the EU. When you come from an EU-country you simply go to the town hall and tell them that you now live in Denmark (the difference for you would probably be that they wouldn't wait for you to go to the town hall, but have you started with this right away), you give them your address, and they start registering you, after about 2 weeks, you get a CPR-number (that's your social security), and the social security card, it's yellow and in Danish called "Sundhedskort". This gives you the right to be treated like a Dane in the health care system. When you get this card, you've been registered as living in Denmark, and as paying taxes. -the Danish Tax office called "SKAT" will have contacted you by then, asking how much you will earn within the year, so they can calculate how much you have to pay in taxes. The average percentage is about 38%-40%, and the 9% in Labor Contribution.

So, what does it mean that you'll be treated like a Dane by the health care system? Going to the doctor is free, so is the hospital. Any kind of surgery operation (apart from some plastic surgeries) is free. The medicin you recieve while hospitalized will be free. Perscription drugs are not free, but a percentage is paid by the state (don't know the exact number, sorry). If you have any medical conditions you can join the health insurance "Danmark" sygeforsikring.dk/Default.aspx?ID=33. Most specialists are free. Some partially. If your doctor says you NEED to go to a chiropractor, the state will pay more than they already do, and so on. Same with eye doctors, it costs to buy glasses, but if you'd be completely blind without, the state will pay a lot of it.

I hope this helped a bit. If anything, I think the link above says quite a bit about the differences between normal health care, and health insurance. Normally, only people that have cronic diseases join a health insurance in Denmark.

Take care

tiiiiiiiina :

Hi Ankit (:

I'm Danish, so you can trust me on this.
If you're from the EU, you get exactly the same health care as the Danes. I'm pretty sure it's the same for people coming from outside of the EU. When you come from an EU-country you simply go to the town hall and tell them that you now live in Denmark (the difference for you would probably be that they wouldn't wait for you to go to the town hall, but have you started with this right away), you give them your address, and they start registering you, after about 2 weeks, you get a CPR-number (that's your social security), and the social security card, it's yellow and in Danish called "Sundhedskort". This gives you the right to be treated like a Dane in the health care system. When you get this card, you've been registered as living in Denmark, and as paying taxes. -the Danish Tax office called "SKAT" will have contacted you by then, asking how much you will earn within the year, so they can calculate how much you have to pay in taxes. The average percentage is about 38%-40%, and the 9% in Labor Contribution.

So, what does it mean that you'll be treated like a Dane by the health care system? Going to the doctor is free, so is the hospital. Any kind of surgery operation (apart from some plastic surgeries) is free. The medicin you recieve while hospitalized will be free. Perscription drugs are not free, but a percentage is paid by the state (don't know the exact number, sorry). If you have any medical conditions you can join the health insurance "Danmark" sygeforsikring.dk/Default.aspx?ID=33. Most specialists are free. Some partially. If your doctor says you NEED to go to a chiropractor, the state will pay more than they already do, and so on. Same with eye doctors, it costs to buy glasses, but if you'd be completely blind without, the state will pay a lot of it.

I hope this helped a bit. If anything, I think the link above says quite a bit about the differences between normal health care, and health insurance. Normally, only people that have cronic diseases join a health insurance in Denmark.

Take care

Tina, your information is correct. But I would like to add one thing. In order to get access to a doctor (in a non life threatening situation) you need a sygesikringskort. But you need to meet certain (and strict) requirements to get one. A person can't just walk up to the Borgerservice and get a CPR number without an 'acceptable' reason for being in Denmark. Even if they're an EU citizen ;)

Hi Tina and Hygee,

I am doing a comparative study on health care in major countries. I thank you for your inputs. Your health care system is pretty impressive.

Surprised to know that Danes end up paying upto 59% in taxes. With 41% disposable income and high cost of living, does it still make Danes happiest people on earth ? I think the survey has brought lots of attention on Denmark.


Regards

Ankit

Well you don't enter the Danish health care system if you don't get a residence permit first - and you don't get it like this if you don't have a job. But that's another story.

A couple of things important to mention: you have your own GP, he will never show up at your home, if you're not dying you'll probably only get a phone consultation, and that is only between 8 and 9 AM, on weekdays, if you want to visit your GP you generally wait a week, hospitals are free but that means you wait months before you get in, which creates a two-speeds health care system with private insurances popping-up and giving you immediate treatment in private hospitals.

So I don't want to say the system is bad, but maybe not as good and "impressive" as you might have understood from Tina and Hygee. Sorry to come with the negative point of view - but all the good part of it has been said already :)

HyggeTime :

But you need to meet certain (and strict) requirements to get one. A person can't just walk up to the Borgerservice and get a CPR number without an 'acceptable' reason for being in Denmark. Even if they're an EU citizen ;)

What? I lived in Paris with my Swedish boyfriend till we desided to move to Denmark (his first time moving to Denamrk), and we literally just walked in to the town hall and said 'hi, he just moved here so..' and she gave us a paper to fill out, which was only like, 'last address in France' 'new address in Denmark' and so..
hmm, I'm just remembering something.. oh that's right, that's because of this Nothern Agreement between the Scandinavian countries.. dammit, sorry guys, I made it sound all easy and stuff. Anyhow, if any Scandinavians have been reading this, I'm glad I could help, heh (:

tiiiiiiiina :
HyggeTime :

But you need to meet certain (and strict) requirements to get one. A person can't just walk up to the Borgerservice and get a CPR number without an 'acceptable' reason for being in Denmark. Even if they're an EU citizen ;)

What? I lived in Paris with my Swedish boyfriend till we desided to move to Denmark (his first time moving to Denamrk), and we literally just walked in to the town hall and said 'hi, he just moved here so..' and she gave us a paper to fill out, which was only like, 'last address in France' 'new address in Denmark' and so..
hmm, I'm just remembering something.. oh that's right, that's because of this Nothern Agreement between the Scandinavian countries.. dammit, sorry guys, I made it sound all easy and stuff. Anyhow, if any Scandinavians have been reading this, I'm glad I could help, heh (:

Yup. From what I understand it is incredibly easy for a citizen of a Nordic country to register in another Nordic country. For the rest of us Europeans, however, it is very difficult!

@ HyggeTime: once again.. sorryyy
but welcome to Denmark anyhow :D and, I'm glad you made it through the system

The reality with health System, true story from a person who is expat from 2008 paying over 50% in taxes since came here in Denmark.
I know every experience is different so might not be all over Denmark the same, but here is my story.
Came from Texas (where by the way got an excellent medical service due to my husband’s insurance with a big company) before that lived 7 years in Canada (very nice services, longer waiting list but still reasonable, just to mention that Canada is having maybe maxim 45% taxes, same national system like here in Denmark).
All in all we are paying a lots of money for very lousy services when you need them, meaning when you have to investigate a problem like myself. Can not receive a CT scan or MRI, long list, no reason to get one ... I was told.
My firs:t experience with the doctor was when being allergic to the most common hormone prescribed in Denmark to the point of having high blood pressure and frozen lips  I searched myself and print out from the internet a page from a website and show her that she can prescribe for me a different brand because is not anymore under special request process.
Second experience: After travelling to Spain I started having problem with my stomach, like any normal person you believe that you got a friendly bug :( On 30'st March 2011 went to doctor, and complained that I have a lot of gas, burping, foul smell, my back is burning (and she told me she never heard about that) did blood test, 1 stool test (negative);after few weeks I told her that now my burning is upper and I am having acid in the mouth, and asked to check for Helicobacter test. Received one, got treatment for it. After the treatment the burning was 10 times stronger. On 31 Aug, done a quick endoscopy 3 minutes of vomiting on the table, no sedative, spray or anything else, 10 minutes all the appointment (private clinic), diagnostic of Hiatal Hernia, reflux, got medication, found no Helicobacter. After the prescribed period I am off medication again, feeling good for maxim two months....and again I do not know what to do. Desperate I am doing with Metametrix (expensive lab USA, a test on my own 500usd) and going back to the doctor, she cannot read my results and is sending me to another specialist this time a gastro-nutritionist. Never ever in my life I have seen such a medical place, not dirty but old in appearance, dark and gloomy look,veterinary clinic’s looks better in USA. At least he was for 30 minutes listening to my story but frugal looking into my expensive lab test, he is mentioning that I can do few more tests and a half colonoscopy right in his medical facilities (EXCUSE ME? no way I do that test there) the place looks in such a way that if you take out the medical things there and create an archive of books will not notice a difference. All other tests came normal, he said I prob. have IBS. Here we reach already Feb 2012, and I would have accepted all the diagnostics but my teenage daughter is starting having stomach problems also...so I insisted to say that might be something common? After travelling? And now I passed into her! I was told that no reason for Helicobacter but they can perform just one stool test, for parasites (limited budget). I said usually you need 3 of this on a spaced interval; sorry this is the protocol in Denmark. I offered to pay for it...was refused. After seeing the doctor one more time she said that my daughter is probably having IBS and needs to do a colonoscopy to confirm that. Just to mention that she is burping many times a day and having change in the stools. IBS with burping? Never heard before, giardia or Helicobacter? Maybe ...my experience with doctors is bad, maybe for Danish people is different but for us, expats, even with maxim taxation, is bad!
Here I am today 31 March one year after my first appointment, self medicating myself with the ppi dosage since nobody seems to give a proper advise or care.
Third experience: With a constant pain on the left side; have seen a gyno, did an ultra-sound and Recommended to me to "reasess the pain since is part of life";
All in all I was paying out of my pocket more than 3000 usd in Chiropractor, acupuncturist, homeopath treatment to fix my problem or be better until our time for leaving Denmark is to come.
My recommendation – If you know that yo do not need any services at all, it is ok to come if you want, need and convenient, money wise, travel, new experience, but if you do require services - GO and work in a different country! Because you pay high taxes for no services.

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