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Legal considerations

Oncolex is an internet-based encyclopedia where users can search by cancer type and obtain updated information for procedures, treatment, and supportive care. Information on Oncolex cannot replace guidance from qualified health personnel. Those who choose to follow the procedures have the independent responsibility of obtaining the necessary approval, license or authorization.  

Practice of medical intervention is regulated through laws, regulations, approvals and authorizations. Legislation should ensure that the health care provided is justifiable and must meet a minimum standard. Principally, the four health laws regulate the enterprise: the Health Personnel Act, the Specialized Health Services Act, the Patients' Rights Act, and the Health Authorities and Health Trusts Act. The Patient Injury Act ensures that patients receive reimbursement for injury caused by performance of health care. All of these laws apply to those who receive health care, and must be seen in correlation. In addition, the professional organizations have prepared professional ethics guidelines which meet public regulations.

Specialized Health Services Act

The reliability standards according to the Specialized Health Services Act is more comprehensive than the Health Personnel Act. Leaders must establish systems to ensure that human error does not occur.  Owners and leaders are responsible for the services carried out within regulated frameworks, and that necessary measures are implemented ensuring that the service is reliable. Therefore, owners and leaders must ensure that equipment is functional, that personnel are sufficiently qualified, that the terms of responsibility are clarified, and shift arrangements are established etc.

The Ministry of Health and Care Services regulates national functions, regional functions, and competence center functions (regulation nr. 2001-12-18. 1539), and the responsibility lies with owners and leaders to ensure they have the necessary approvals to carry out certain functions. Approvals can be withdrawn if the enterprise does not perform reliably.   

Health Personnel Act

The goal of the this act is tri-fold: it should impart security for patients, impart quality health care, and provide a base for the peoples' confidence in health personnel and health care. This Act poses requirements to the individual health worker. 

The Act gives a clarification of the requirement for reliable professional practice. The Norwegian Board of Health Supervision (and municipal doctors) inspect that health personnel stay within their professional areas and do not exceed their professional qualifications. The Health Personnel Act provides a basis for administrative reactions from the Norwegian Board of Health Supervision or the Health Personnel Committee against health personnel which carry out actions, which based on a reliability and risk assessment, require professional skills or knowledge they do not possess.    

Qualifications refer to formal and intrinsic qualifications such as medical training, specialist training, and experience. With regards to the individual health personnel groups, the professional organization standards should guide the resepective professional groups. The authorization should contribute to predictability for patients focusing on content in the professional practice.

The claim for reliablity involves that health personnel should not exceed their qualifications connected to examinations, treatment and other health care of patients. Even if formal authorization exists, the reliability clause requires each patient to assess whether they have sufficient qualifications or whether the patient should be referred further, or whether specialist skills are required.

The employer must check that their health personnel have the necessary license/authorizations. Valid authorizations can be checked at the Norwegian Registration Authority for Health Personnel.

Health Authorities and Health Trusts Act

This act applies primarily to organizational frameworks within ownership of Norway's specialized health services. The Act indicates how the national specialized health service should be organized to achieve the objectives. The indication of the political objectives will steer the country's practice of its ownership of hospitals and other parts of the specialized health service. The decision indicates the regional health enterprise and health enterprise's senior task. Equality values, patient positions, and rights related to health care, measured by high quality, and optimal use of resources, should characterize the regional health enterprises dispositions and priorities. The enterprises should facilitate these objectives in their operation.

Patients' Rights Act

This law provides rights to patients and ensures that these rights are in the prosess. Citizens and those residing in Norway have a right to health care despite background, residence, or financial status. The law ensures that those who need health care receive the help they need. If the health region cannot offer the necessary health care, the patient can apply for care in another region or country. 

The law ensures the patient the right to cooperation, information, and access. The obligation to provide information lies with the health personnel providing the health care. The right to cooperation does not exempt health personnel from making decisions ensuring justifiable treatment to patients. 

Patient Injury Act 

This act ensures that the patient recieves reimbursement for injury caused by health care. Injury alone is not sufficient; it must be a patient injury. To be considered a patient injury, it must be caused by an institution in the specialist health services, municipal health service, or ambulatory care/transport, or by health personnel. These types of injuries are considered patient injuries if they are caused during counseling, examination, diagnosing, treatment, handling of drugs from a pharmacy, care, vaccination, specimen-taking, specimen analysis, or medical experimental work, as well as donation of organs, blood, and tissue.

The procedures in Oncolex are not intended for instruction for health personnel issuing responsibility to Oslo University Hospital. If a health care worker requires instruction, it must be obtained from qualified health personnel.

Oslo University Hospital shall not be liable for any loss whether direct, indirect, incidental or consequential, arising out of access to, use of, or reliance upon any of the content on this website. Oslo University Hospital© 2017