Work, school and health care
You have the right to work once you have received a decision on a residence permit with temporary protection under the Temporary Protection Directive. Your children have the right to attend school and you have the right to health care as soon as you have applied for protection under the Temporary Protection Directive.
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The right to work
If you are 16 years of age or older, you have the right to work once you have received a decision on a residence permit with protection under the Temporary Protection Directive. You can contact the Swedish Public Employment Service for help with finding a job.
If you find work, you need to register with the Swedish Tax Agency to pay taxes. You or your employer should submit a registration form for preliminary income tax (so called A-skatt). If you have been granted a residence permit under the Temporary Protection Directive, you can begin working even if the Swedish Tax Agency has not yet made a decision regarding your preliminary income tax.
School for children
Children who have applied for or received a residence permit with temporary protection under the Temporary Protection Directive have the right to attend preschool and school.
Children have the right to attend preschool from the age of 1 year if their parents, for example, work or study or if the child otherwise has her/his own need for such care due to the family’s situation. Starting in the autumn semester of the year children reach the age of 3, they have the right to attend preschool even if their parents do not work or study.
Starting in the autumn semester of the year children reach the age of 6, they have the right to attend school. School is free and all children must attend ten years of primary school.
Upon completion of primary school, young people have the right to secondary education, as long as they begin this education before reaching the age of 18. In upper secondary school (high school), one can prepare for higher education or learn a profession.
It is the municipality where you live that is responsible for ensuring that your child gets a place at a school. Contact the municipality and tell them you want your children to attend school. If you need help with this, contact the Swedish Migration Agency. You can also find information on the municipality’s website. The municipality will inform you about its preschools and schools and help you further.
Health and medical care
Once you have applied for or received a residence permit with temporary protection under the Temporary Protection Directive, you as an adult have the right to emergency medical care, emergency dental care and medical care that cannot wait. It is the health service that decides which care cannot wait. You are also entitled to obstetric care, abortion care, contraceptive counselling, maternal health care, and care provided under the Communicable Diseases Act (a law intended to prevent the spread of infectious diseases). Once you have received a residence permit under the Temporary Protection Directive, you will receive an offer for a free health exam. During the health exam, you will get advice on health issues, the chance to take certain medical tests, and information about health and medical care in Sweden.
If you show your residence permit (UT) card, you pay a lower fee when you visit healthcare services or pick up certain medications at the pharmacy.
Children and young people under the age of 18 are entitled to the same healthcare and dental care as other children living in Sweden. Such care is largely free for children but it can vary depending on where you live. Medication for children is free if you have a prescription from a doctor. Your child can also have free access to certain assistive devices if a health care provider has assessed that it is needed.
In Sweden, anyone aged 12 years or over can be vaccinated against COVID-19. Elderly and particularly vulnerable people may need to get vaccinated several times. It is very important that you have the vaccination you are offered if you are not already fully vaccinated, so that we can stop the spread of the virus together. Vaccinated against COVID-19 is free of charge and voluntary. Children also have the right to get vaccinated against other common infectious childhood diseases.
When you become ill, get injured or are not feeling well psychologically, or need support or care due to a disability, you should primarily contact a healthcare centre (vårdcentral). A healthcare centre is a local, publicly funded healthcare facility. There you can see, among others, a nurse, general practitioner or counsellor. If they assess that you need more specialised care or assistive devices, they can help to refer you to the correct place.
Often, you need to make an appointment before you visit a health care provider. You have the right to an interpreter when you go to see a healthcare professional. Tell them you need an interpreter when you make an appointment.
If you think you need glasses, contact your reception unit and apply for a special allowance for eye examinations and glasses. It is the case officer at the Swedish Migration Agency who decides whether you should receive an eye examination. Once you have received a decision on a granted eye examination, you can book an appointment with the optician and you must do so within three weeks. If the optician decides that you need glasses, they will order glasses paid for by the Swedish Migration Agency.
If you have a disability that makes it difficult for you to cope with everyday life on your own, it is important that you tell the Swedish Migration Agency. Also contact the healthcare centre so that you can get help. If you have a disability that makes it difficult for you to communicate in contact with the Swedish Migration Agency or other authorities, you can get help and support for that. Talk to your Unit for Reception about what support you can get. Having a disability is not an obstacle to obtaining a residence permit.
More information about healthcare
- On the website www.1177.se External link, opens in new window., there is information in several languages about diseases and how healthcare in Sweden works. There you can also find phone numbers for the healthcare centres and dentists located in the place where you live.
- You can also call Vårdguiden by phoning 1177. Then you will be able to talk to a nurse who can answer questions and give advice on health and medical care. The nurse can also assess your need for care and refer you to the right healthcare facility if necessary.
- Kvinnofridslinjen (Sweden’s National Women’s Helpline) offers advice and support to women subjected to threats and/or physical, psychological and sexual violence. Call 020-50 50 50. They will organise an interpreter in just a few minutes. You will find more information at kvinnofridslinjen.se. The information is available in several languages.
- The staff at your Unit for Reception or accommodation can help you with more information and find out where you should go to get the right healthcare in the place where you live.
- If you become acutely ill and need an ambulance, call the emergency number 112. Use the same number if you need to contact the police or fire department in an emergency situation.