If you wish to practice the profession of pharmacist in the Federal Republic of Germany, you will generally require a license to practice as a pharmacist. If you have not completed your training in a member state of the European Union or a signatory state to the Agreement on the European Economic Area or Switzerland, you can also be granted permission to practice the profession of pharmacist on a temporary basis upon application. The permit may be limited to certain activities and employment positions. It may only be granted on a revocable basis and only for a maximum total period of two years. In exceptional cases, the permit may be extended beyond this period. In Bavaria, the government of Upper Bavaria and the government of Lower Franconia are responsible for issuing the permit. The government of Upper Bavaria is responsible if you wish to practice the profession of pharmacist in the administrative districts of Upper Bavaria, Lower Bavaria, Upper Palatinate or Swabia. The government of Lower Franconia is responsible if you wish to work as a pharmacist in the administrative districts of Upper, Middle or Lower Franconia.
If you have completed your training in an EU/EEA country or Switzerland, you will generally not be granted a license. Instead, you must apply for a license to practice immediately. An exception applies if there is a special interest in obtaining a license with regard to the intended practice of the pharmacy profession.
In certain cases, nationals of an EU/EEA state or Switzerland may practice the profession of pharmacist in the Federal Republic of Germany even without a license or without a permit to temporarily practice the profession of pharmacist, 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 (ex Article 50 of the EC Treaty). However, you are subject to a registration obligation. The Government of Upper Bavaria and the Government of Lower Franconia will inform you whether you require a permit in accordance with the allocation of responsibilities described above.
In principle, the most important requirement is that you can provide evidence that you have completed full training as a pharmacist 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 profession of pharmacist (reliability and worthiness),
- you are not unfit from a health point of view to practise the profession of pharmacist (health suitability) and
- you have the necessary knowledge of the German language to exercise the profession (knowledge of specialist languages in a professional context at level C1 according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages is required; the language skills must be proven by a specialist language test, which is carried out by the Bavarian State Chamber of Pharmacists on behalf of the responsible government, if such a test is deemed necessary by the government); 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 State Chamber of Pharmacists.
4 Specialist language tests taken at the Chamber of Pharmacists or the competent authority of another country, as well as specialist language tests from other examination institutions, shall be recognized as proof, provided that it is guaranteed that the examination there is equivalent to the specialist language test at the Bavarian State Chamber of Pharmacists. Whether this requirement is met in individual cases must be clarified in advance with the responsible professional licensing office.