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Norway

Norway

Organisation and finance
In Norway, the treatment of hearing impairment is mainly a public task, but treatment is available at private hearing health care clinics, as well.

The maximum public subsidy is Nkr 5,400 per hearing aid (approx. Euro 675). As a consequence, the user pays some of the costs involved, especially if he/she chooses one of the latest and more expensive high-tech hearing aids.

Binaural fitting and digital technology are commonly accepted in Norway. Most hearing aid users in Norway use digital technology.

Testing and treatment
Norway has a system of public hearing health centres located at the general hospitals. Doctors and hearing health care professionals diagnose hearing loss and dispense hearing aids at the centres. Alternatively, privately-owned clinics may be used.

Other types of hearing aid technology can be obtained for free, if necessary.

Waiting lists
Waiting lists for public hearing health care varies geographically - from one month up to 14 months. In Trondheim, patients wait up to 60 weeks for a fitting. In Namdal, the wait is just four weeks. The Norwegian system offers a free choice of hospital, allowing hearing impaired patients to have their hearing aids fitted at hospitals other than the closest one. Considering the wide variation in waiting times, some may choose to travel to a centre to cut down on the waiting time. For an update on waiting times around Norway, visit

www.sykehusvalg.net.

For those choosing to go to a private dispenser, virtually no waiting list is involved.

Types of hearing aids
Mainly digital hearing aids are dispensed in Norway, and of these, many are small in-the-ear-canal hearing aids. Binaural fitting is common and publicly subsidised.

When people go to a private dispenser, they can buy the hearing aid they prefer.

Batteries and service
Upon receipt of the hearing aids, users are provided with three batteries per hearing aid. When they have been used up, the purchase of additional batteries becomes the responsibility of the hearing-impaired patient. However, service is free of charge.

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