For many years now, Norway is well known for attracting foreign doctors. Due to chronical shortage of doctors, the country has been quite eager to attract doctors from abroad, mainly specialist doctors, to fill vacant positions in the constantly expanding health care sector.
Long before the existence of the European Union, the Nordic countries have had a common job market, and relevant university and specialty degrees that were accepted in the Nordic countries without problems.
In general the health care systems in Scandinavia are quite alike. Almost every patient doctor contact is established in the public sector, due to the fact that there are only a few private clinics and small specialized hospitals. During the last years, the activity in the private sector has risen because of the political environment and the well-known chronic economic crisis in the health care sector.
Norway, because of its relative prosperousness, has provided so far very good conditions for the patients and the healthcare workers alike. Many structural reforms have taken place during the last few years, where small hospitals and units were closed, and more centralized structures regarding specialist care have been established.
All in all this development has reduced the growth in demand for healthcare personnel, including doctors. Nevertheless, there are still quite good chances to get a job, especially in more remote areas. In general there is no unemployment for healthcare personnel.
The majority of the 4 million Norwegians live in the five biggest cities in this vast country. However, so far, national policy targets the population of the most remote areas, including the need for hospitals there. Of course this increases the demand for doctors, but it is often quite hard to get a doctor to stay for a longer period of time at a permanent base because of the isolation, both personal and professional.
On the other hand, this is a great possibility to experience places you would never go to, and for shure never would live in, if it was not for this reason.
Like in most other countries, there is an 18 month internship after university and doctor (medical) school. After this, one can start specialization. Most of the basic specializations, demand about four years of training and work in the core field, and then one year in another specialty as a supplementary training. Besides this there are several obligatory courses relevant for the specialty. At least 18 months of the specialty training should take place at a university clinic. To become sub-specialized, one needs of course more training.
There are very good possibilities funding of the theoretical specialist training. Relevant working experience from the home country should be taken into consideration when applying for a specialty in Norway.
Most hospitals can offer you an apartment to rent, kindergarten and maybe even a career opportunity for your partner.
The weekly working hours are a minimum of 38 hours, but often amount to 40-45 as an average over time. If you work more, the overtime hours will be paid extra or you can choose to have paid leave instead. So the working hours are much more pleasant than in many other European countries. Five week holydays should give you a good opportunity to become familiar with the country and its people.
The salary starts at approximately 40.000 Euros/year and a consultant can earn up to 100.000 Euros/year. There are furthermore good possibilities to increase this salary with extra work at both public and private clinics.
The relatively good salary is however balanced by the world’s highest living costs, and a quite high personal income tax at around 50%. This is partially compensated by a 15% tax reduction for foreigners for the first 4 years of their stay in the country.
At last, the people, your future colleagues are very pleasant. There is not a very hierarchic organization in Norwegian hospitals, which are profiting from the countries egalitarian way of life. You will have a chance to profit as well if you dare…
For the moment we are recruiting for Norway specialist doctors in:
– Specialist General psychiatry
– Specialist Clinical radiology
– Specialist Child and adolescent psychiatry
You are more than welcome to apply: