Laws and regulations
In order to create safe and secure care the health and social care service is governed by laws and regulations. Here are some of the laws and regulations that apply when you are receiving care from us.
The Health and Medical Services Act
The Health and Medical Services Act is what is known as a framework act and contains fundamental rules for all health and social care. The act also regulates what we as healthcare providers are obliged to offer you as a patient.
The Act concerning Support and Service for Persons with Certain Functional Impairments (LSS)
The purpose of this act is that anyone with a functional impairment should receive the support they need in order to able to live a life that is as independent as possible. LSS is what is known as a rights law. This means that, if you do not receive the support that is your right, you can approach the courts.
The Patients’ fees and the high-cost protection scheme
Health and social care in Sweden is paid for largely by county council and municipal taxes. The fee you pay when visiting your doctor, for example, is only a small proportion of what it actually costs.
The high-cost protection scheme means that there is a limit to how much you need to pay for health and social care. The high-cost protection scheme is structured in the same way in all county councils in Sweden. You can find out more about patients’ fees and the high-cost protection scheme at 1177 Vårdguiden (health care advice).
The Patient Act
The Patient Act came into force on 1 January 2015. The most important objective of the act is to strengthen the patient’s position and to get people more involved in their care.
The act enables the patient to choose providers of publicly financed primary care and outpatient specialist care throughout Sweden. You can also register with a county council other than the one where you live. Your home county council pays for your care, but you are personally responsible for your travel and accommodation.
One important element of the act is that health care personnel have a greater obligation to inform the patient of the choices, risks and opportunities that exist. Among other things, the patient must be given information about treatment methods and risks of complications.
The Patient Data Act
The Patient Data Act contains rules on the handling of personal data in the health and social care system. This act regulates, among other things:
• opportunities for health and social care personnel involved in the care of a certain patient to access information in medical records necessary for care, even if this has been recorded in a different healthcare organisation
• rules on who may access patient information in their work in health and social care services
• the patient’s right to block information in their medical records in an electronic medical records system
The Patient Safety Act
The Patient Safety Act means, among other things, that the care provider has been given a clearer responsibility for identifying and rectifying system faults. The Patient Safety Act also contains procedures for how complaints about care are to be handled. You can find more information about our work on patient safety under the heading “Safe and secure care” above.
Duty of confidentiality and secrecy
Everyone who works in health and social care services has a duty of confidentiality. This means that information about your contact with the healthcare system and the treatment you receive may not be passed on without your consent. This is regulated for everyone working in public health and social care services in the Public Access to Information and Secrecy Act.
The care guarantee is a statutory part of the Health and Medical Care Act. The care guarantee defines within which time limits you must be offered care by the county council or the region. The care guarantee does not, however, regulate whether care is to be given or what care is to be offered.