Anyone wishing to practise medicine in the Federal Republic of Germany requires a license to do so. If you wish to practise the medical profession, you generally require a license to practice medicine. If you are not a national of an EU/EEA member state, you are permitted to practise the medical profession temporarily or limited to certain activities on the basis of a revocable permit. This may only be issued for a maximum total duration of two years. In Bavaria, the government of Upper Bavaria is responsible for issuing the license for work in the administrative districts of Upper Bavaria, Lower Bavaria, Swabia and Upper Palatinate, as well as the government of Lower Franconia for work in the administrative districts of Upper Franconia, Middle Franconia and Lower Franconia.
In certain cases, nationals of an EU/EEA state or Switzerland may practice the medical profession in the Federal Republic of Germany without a license to practice medicine or without a permit to temporarily practice the medical profession, provided that they are temporarily and occasionally active as providers of services within the meaning of Article 57 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. However, you are subject to a registration obligation. The competent government (see above) will inform you whether you require a permit.
In principle, the most important requirement is that you can prove that you have completed a full course of medical training in accordance with the law of the country in which you completed your training.
Further requirements are
- that you have not been guilty of any conduct that makes you unworthy or unreliable to practise the medical profession (reliability),
- you are not unfit in terms of health to practise the medical profession (medical fitness) and
- you have the knowledge of the German language required for practicing the profession (language skills).
You must submit the application for the permit together with the required documents to the responsible government.
We recommend that you seek advice beforehand.
- The Koordinierungs- und Beratungsstelle Berufsanerkennung (KuBB) supports and advises employers and individuals seeking recognition on the recognition of foreign qualifications. Further information can be found under "Further links".
- The Central Service Center for Professional Recognition (ZSBA) serves as a central point of contact for applicants throughout the entire recognition procedure. Further information can be found under "Further links".
- For assistance with the application procedure/entry, you can also contact the International Placement Services (ZAV) . Further information can be found under "Further links".
The granting of a license to practice medicine or a professional permit requires, among other things, that you have the necessary knowledge of the German language to practice your profession. The 87th Conference of Health Ministers in 2014 agreed in a key points paper on the requirements for knowledge of the German language and how this knowledge can be demonstrated. The following applies:
1. the required German language skills are deemed to be proven for applicants for whom the licensing authority determines without doubt that German is spoken and written fluently (e.g. as a native language) or that the completion of medical, dental, pharmaceutical or psychotherapeutic training (proof of training) was obtained in German.
2. proof of the required German language skills is generally deemed to have been provided if the applicant has completed at least ten years of general schooling at a German-speaking school or has completed at least three years of vocational training in German.
3. if proof is not deemed to have been provided in accordance with 1. or 2. above, the language skills required for practicing the profession shall be deemed to have been demonstrated by submission of a certificate of successful completion of the specialist language test at the Bavarian Medical Association.
4 Specialist language tests taken at the Medical Association or the competent authority of another country, as well as specialist language tests from other examination institutions, are recognized as proof, provided that it is guaranteed that the examination there is equivalent to the specialist language test at the Bavarian Medical Association. Whether this requirement is met in individual cases must be clarified in advance with the relevant professional licensing office.
A license or permit is not required for merely temporary and occasional medical activities (services). For the provision of services, it is sufficient to register with the competent authority and submit certain documents (see "Related topics").