Fred Hatlebrekke, President of the Norwegian Physiotherapist Association (right) with the Norwegian Minister of Health and Social Services Bent Høie

People in Norway to get direct access to physical therapists without referral

Physical therapists in Norway are celebrating news that people in Norway will soon have direct access to physiotherapists without referral, following government proposals to improve public health and speed access to health professionals.

The Norwegian Physiotherapist Association has argued for the change for many years. “For physiotherapists in Norway this is a historic moment,” said the association’s President Fred Hatlebrekke. “Finally, we have obtained full recognition for our expertise in assessing patients holistically and independently.”
 
The change was officially announced on 7th May, as the Minister of Health and Social Services set out changes to health and care services. He also proposed a change to current laws so that all municipalities in Norway will be obliged to offer physiotherapy services.
 
“This is wonderful news,” said Brenda Myers, WCPT Secretary General. “Congratulations to the profession in Norway for reaching this milestone in the development of the profession and for gaining recognition by policy makers of the important role physical therapists play in the health of populations.”

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