What is rehabilitation?

Rehabilitation can help if you have an illness or impairment that makes it more difficult for you to work, study or live independently. Rehabilitation is based on an individual plan with a set of defined goals. In order to get rehabilitation through Kela, you need a doctor’s statement describing that you need rehabilitation because of an illness or impairment. Most of the rehabilitation services available from Kela are provided free of charge. You may also be entitled to a rehabilitation allowance while participating in rehabilitation.

The goals and length of the rehabilitation, as well as the types of services granted to you, will be determined according to your individual needs. Services can range from a rehabilitation assessment lasting just a few days to a longer-term rehabilitation process.

The rehabilitation may be directed towards such goals as:

  • maintaining and restoring the physical capacity to function
  • choosing a suitable occupation or line of education
  • helping to finish an education
  • staying in or returning to working life
  • adjusting to life with an illness or impairment. 

Some of the rehabilitation measures supporting these goals include:

  • rehabilitative psychotherapy
  • education and training
  • vocational rehabilitation supporting the integration into work
  • vocational rehabilitation courses
  • rehabilitation and adaptation training courses for groups of people with specific medical diagnoses
  • various types of therapy as part of intensive medical rehabilitation.

How is rehabilitation arranged?

The rehabilitation available through Kela is provided by companies specialising in rehabilitation, rehabilitation institutions, disability advocacy organisations, educational institutions, and independent therapists. Rehabilitation services are available regionally as well nationwide, so you may have to travel further afield to reach the rehabilitation service provider. Therapies can also be arranged at your home or elsewhere in your daily environment.

Use the service provider search (in Finnish and Swedish only) function to learn more about the organisations and professionals providing rehabilitation services through Kela.

Rehabilitation available from other sources

In addition to Kela, rehabilitation services are arranged by public healthcare organisations (health centres and hospitals), occupational health providers, municipal social services and disability advocacy organisations. If you participate in rehabilitation arranged by one of these organisations, you should find out whether you can get rehabilitation allowance payments from Kela during participation in the rehabilitation.

Vocational rehabilitation is also arranged by the earnings-related pension providers. Contact your doctor or Kela to find out the types of rehabilitation you may be eligible for. If a particular rehabilitation service you need is not available through Kela, you will be referred to the appropriate provider.

If you have had an accident (for example at work or in traffic), or if you have an occupational disease, your insurance company will usually arrange vocational rehabilitation for you.  

Further information