Medical PG in Germany

Work yourself to Medical PG/Residency in Germany

Medical Post-graduation in Germany (Weiterbildung zum Facharzt)

Since 2012 doctors from foreign countries (Non-EU) can complete their post-graduation and seek employment in Germany. Medical post-graduation in Germany is regulated by the State medical council. To apply for a PG position in Germany, a doctor has to obtain the permanent license to practice in Germany called as “Approbation”. Here, we will cover all information a foreign doctor needs to follow to start his Medical Post Graduation in Germany.

Germany is facing shortage of medical professionals; mainly due to retirement of Doctors  and an ageing population. This lead to the decision of accepting doctors from third world countries. The number of foreign medical graduates in Germany is constantly rising since this move. Considering the difficulty in securing post-graduate positions in several countries and the high quality of life it offers, Germany became one of the main destinations for Doctors seeking PG opportunities abroad. The number of FMGs has increased from 18,431(2009) to 54,753(2020) an increase of around 200% within 10 years!!!

Foreign Doctors in Germany

Doctors from EU countries accounts for the major community of foreign doctors in Germany. As per the 2020 statistics, 26,967 doctors from various countries in the EU work in Germany. Compared to 2017, a 3.9 % increase. It is interested to note that doctors, even from other popular destinations for foreign physicians like USA (357), Canada (95), UK (300), Australia (28) and New Zealand (6) also work in Germany.

Job of 40 Hours/Week(Monday to Friday)

Weekend Duties, Night Duties, Overtime, Holiday Shifts etc are compensated with extra payment.

Ease in getting a PR

Once a doctor starts working on a blue card he is eligible to get a PR in 21 months provided he pays his taxes and allowances. He will be eligible for a German passport after 8 years of stay in Germany.

Salary of 4800-5000 €/Month (Basic)

Pre-tax, Social Security & Health and Pension Insurances. Salary is according to TV-Ärzte Tarifsvertrag and almost the same all over Germany except for University Hospitals.

Residency of Choice & Super-Specialty

As Germany has vacancies in all fields, the chance of getting the desired branch is significantly high. Moreover in Germany, you can opt for Direct Super-Specialization.

International Recognition

German degrees are highly reputed world-wide. The quality of health care, facilities, technological development etc in Germany is well known too.

Zero Tuition Fee

Unlike many other countries, Germany offers free education. As medical specialization is considered as a Job, all residents will receive a handsome monthly salary!

Hurdles of Medical Specialization from Germany

German Language

FMGs sometimes find it tricky to learn German language, as most of them had studied basics of medicine in English. English and German originated from the common ancestor, The Germanic Language. Therefore for the most part, script, pronunciation and words remain the same. Above all, medical terminologies comprises mostly of Latin words. However, mastering the common tongue is the first and most important challenge!

Time Consuming Procedure

Through an intensive course, a candidate will be able to complete the language course and other preparatory courses in a year. However, the bureaucratic hurdles to receive language exam appointments, documentation, knowledge exam appointments, license etc can stretch the process bit further.


To ensure the quality of international graduates, Germany introduced 2 exams. Fachsprachenprüfung or Specific Language Exam to test the Medical language proficiency and Kenntnisprüfung or knowledge exam to test the knowledge in medical subjects. However, these are not competitive exams just pass/fail and will not affect selection or commencement for post-graduation.

Benefits of doing Medical Post-Graduation in Germany

Gaining German language skills is an important part of working in Germany.Doctors from abroad may be attracted to Germany as a place to complete their specialist training or further their knowledge, or may simply see better opportunities for work and lifestyle there.

After completing their tertiary education, junior doctors in training are entitled to an EU Blue Card, making it easier to obtain a residence permit for people in occupations that have a shortage of applicants.

A Doctor is eligible for higher studies in Germany after receiving Approbation. Postgraduation in Germany is regulated by corresponding State Medical Councils.The Doctor can undergo Medical Specialization Training under specialists who are authorized for Training.

Once the doctor registered with a medical council for post-graduation, he or she will be provided with a Log Book with necessary stages to complete the studies. Upon completion of each step, signature has to be obtained from corresponding departments. After completion of all postings, Log Book has to be submitted back to the medical council and appointment for final exam (Facharztprüfung) will be provided. Upon passing the exam the degree of Facharzt (Specialist) will be awarded. 

However, doctors need to obtain a German license to practice medicine (‘Approbation’) in Germany to initiate the Training.

Here is an outline of the steps that a non-EU doctors need to follow in order to work in German hospitals, clinics and medical practices.

If you have completed your medical studies and have a registration to practice either from Study Country or Home Country or have just completed medical studies, you are eligible to pursue post-graduation in Germany. We will elaborate the requirements in three categories here.

Step 1: Demonstrate German language skills (Language Learning)

Anyone who wants to work in Germany as a doctor, dentist, pharmacist or psychotherapist must have sufficient oral and written German language skills for both professional and informal use.The first step is to provide evidence of oral and written language skills at level B2 or C1 of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR).A medical graduate should have at least C1 (General German) and C1 (Medical German) Level of German language knowledge to pursue medical post-graduation in Germany.

How long does it take to learn German?

German classes outside Germany will usually take longer to complete as students have less opportunity to practice the language lessons. The below table indicates approximate duration in Germany and outside Germany.

Levels Eurizone (India) Eurizone (Germany) Goethe institute (India)
A1 4 Weeks 8 Weeks 12 Weeks
A2 4 Weeks 8 Weeks 12 Weeks
B1 6-8 Weeks 8 Weeks 12 Weeks
B2.1,B2.2 16 Weeks 8 Weeks 24 Weeks
C1.1,C1.2 16 Weeks 8 Weeks 24 Weeks

The language learning largely depends on the grasping power of students. The data is based on Goethe Institute prescribed duration (for German language studies outside Germany) .Whoever promise to teach faster than this (outside Germany), is just a scam. The student may pass the Goethe Exams, but they will not be able to communicate properly in Germany which is crucial for Doctors.

This may be followed by the patient communication test (‘Fachsprachprüfung’)FSP, which is mandatory in most parts of Germany.

Step 2: Submit the required documents for Recognition

The approval authority uses the Anabin qualification database in the approval process. Candidates can use the database themselves to check whether their qualifications are likely to be approved. Doctors then need to arrange for their medical diplomas/certificates to be recognized. The first point of contact for this is the approval authority for the Federal State where the doctor would initially like to work.

You can request a list of the required documents from the approval authority. This may include a degree certificate, the course content, a Certificate of Good Standing (‘Unbedenklichkeitsbescheinigung’) and a police clearance certificate. Official German translations of these documents must be submitted to the approval authority. You can obtain translations of official documents from authorized or sworn translators appointed by Eurizone Education Pvt. Ltd.

Step 3: license to practice medicine ‘Approbation’ (Medical Knowledge)

Medical degrees from EU and certain other countries are recognized in line with the Bologna criteria. If the candidate has obtained a license to practice medicine in a country outside the EU, the approval process will include demonstration of the necessary language skills, Patient communication test (‘Fachsprachprüfung’) FSP, Equivalence of Medical Degree plus a knowledge test with a panel of physicians known as Kenntisprufung, KP.

Before taking this FSP test, doctors from non-EU countries can apply to a suitable clinic to work as a trainee. They may work in this role for several months in order to develop their language skills, learning both medical and everyday terms, as well as increase their knowledge of the German health care system.

After obtaining their license to practice medicine, “Approbation “doctors must register with their State Medical Chamber .

A license to practice medicine is only granted for a particular state, rather than for the whole of Germany. If you want to treat patients in another state, you will need to register with the relevant State Medical Chamber. Your previous license is usually recognized in these cases.

Duration of Medical PG Training in Germany

The duration of Medical PG training varies according to the fields. Usually it will take a minimum of 5 years to complete PG training in Medical branches and 6 years in PG training in Surgical branches.

Super-Specialty Training in Germany

In Germany a division of specialty and Super-specialty fields do not exist. For example plastic surgery is a Super-Specialty in many countries. Whereas one can join directly for training in plastic surgery after Approbation. In the training process, training in General Surgery will also be included.

Super-Specialty Training in Germany for Doctors with foreign Specialty.

To work as a Doctor in Germany, whether for Specialty or Super-Specialty, one needs to obtain Approbation and fulfill all criteria for Approbation. After receiving Approbation, the doctor has to apply to Medical Council for recognition of his or her Specialty done in their home country. A complete recognition of the qualification may not be possible due to the difference of standards of education. The rest of the duration of studies should be completed as prescribed by the Medical Council to obtain the degree in the corresponding field.

Steps for Medical Post-Graduation in Germany

Anyone who sees themselves in Germany as a Healthcare Professional must have sufficient oral and written German skills for both professional and informal use. The first step is to provide evidence of oral and written language skills at level B2 or C1 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).A medical graduate should have at least C1 (General German) and C1 (Medical German) Level of German language knowledge to pursue medical post-graduation in Germany. This language learning can be done in your home country or Germany. It is strongly suggested that the advance level of Language learning should be done from Germany as it gives a better results for the doctors.

Once a student completes B2 level, he or she will be able to understand a native speaker clearly, communicate fluently & can understand and write complex texts in German. The proficiency until B2 level is tested by Goethe/ Telc Examinations. C1 Medizin focuses on Doctor-Patient communication, Daily communication in Hospitals and Doctor-Doctor communication. C1 Medizinlevel is tested by an exam, called Fachsprachenprüfung (Specific Language Test conducted by individual state medical councils). The pattern of Fachsprachenprüfung is as follows

Pattern of Fachsprachenprüfung (Specific Language Test)

The Fachsprachprüfung takes place as an individual exam in 3 stages. The assessment is carried out by at least two examiners, of which at least one is a physician.

  1. Doctor-Patient conversation (History taking) (20 min)
  2. Documentation (20 min)
  3. Doctor-Doctor communication (Case presentation) (20 min)

The medical expertise is not checked in the technical language examination.

How difficult is Fachsprachenprüfung (FSP)

The average failure rate all over Germany is 56%. Many states it averages between 60-40 %. Though, most of the candidates pass the exam in second attempt. According to the latest survey students who have learnt German language in their home countries find it extremely difficult in understanding the local dialects and this becomes a major reason for the high failure rate. Students completing languages in Germany has a pass percentage of over 90% in FSP assessment test. A language course, tailored to the needs of medical communication will be the solution. If possible, it is always advisable to learn German language in Germany as communication is the most important determination factor for a foreign Doctor´s success in Germany.

How to apply for Fachsprachenprüfung (FSP)

In most states, a direct application for FSP Exam is not possible. Once a doctor applied for Temporary (Berufserlaubnis) or Permanent License (Approbation), after verification of the documents, the application for Fachsprachenprüfung will be forwarded to the corresponding medical council by the Approbation Authorities. An appointment for the exam will be provided by the medical council. The individual requirements for applying for Approbation or Temporary license can be found at corresponding Approbation Authorities websites.

Berufserlaubnis is the temporary license to practice medicine in Germany. This is valid for 2 years. Even though the doctor will receive salary and benefits, this period will not be counted for post-graduation. Within this period of 2 years, a doctor needs to complete the procedure of Approbation. Most of the states require a job offer (Einstellungzusage) from a German hospital to apply for Berufserlaubnis.

If there is a substantial difference between applicant’s studies and German medical studies, he or she has to prove the knowledge by participating in a Knowledge Test known as Kenntnisprüfung. Applicant can also opt-out of the comparison process and ask for Kenntnisprüfung directly but the results of this are not very encouraging.

Pattern of Kenntnisprüfung

The knowledge test Kenntnisprüfung is an oral-practical examination with a patient presentation, which is essentially based on the requirements of the Third Section of the Medical Examination in accordance with ÄApprO. The questions should also take the following aspects into account:

  1. Internal Medicine
  2. Intensive care and emergency medicine
  3. Surgery
  4. Orthopaedics examination
  5. Medical history and physical examination
  6. Imaging procedures
  7. Patient Presentation
  8. Clinical pharmacology / toxicology
  9. Radiology, nuclear medicine, radiation protection
  10. Medical law

Approbation is the permanent license to practice medicine in Germany. This is received after passing the Kenntnisprüfung and makes you eligible to start your Medical Training in Germany.

Pre-requisites for Approbation :

  1. Completed the prescribed training and passed the exam (Kenntnisprüfung or a positive decision after comparison of studies)
  2. Has not been guilty of any behavior that results in the unworthiness or unreliability of practicing the profession (Good standing certificate)
  3. Has the health to practice the profession (Medical certificate).
  4. Have sufficient German language skills (Fachsprachenprüfung).

If the conditions are met, the applicant has a legal right to be granted the license to practice medicine in Germany.

In short you should have a completed medical degree as well as the license to practice medicine independently in your study country or home country. The academic requirements for permanent license to practice medicine in Germany are;

  1. MBBS Degree Certificate (Or Equivalent)
  2. Medical Council Registration Certificate (Study Country/Home Country)
  3. Internship Completion Certificate

Foreign Physicians-Type of jobs.

More and more doctors with a qualification acquired abroad are employed at German Hospitals, Clinics and in outpatient care.

"In rural areas, outside doctors help in Healthcare system which improves the shortage of doctors in such areas." (Prof.Montgomery, President of the German Medical Association).

Especially in the past foreign doctors, particularly those from third-world countries came to Germany to undergo their training in medical specialties. The doctors worked either with a limited license to practice also known “Berufserlaubnis”, or “Approbation”.

At the beginning of their employment, the foreign doctors are not only in an (administrative) postgraduate training relationship, but also in an employment relationship, which means that they are subject to social insurance and payroll tax.

The training regulations of the State Medical Council regulate that postgraduate training is provided within the framework of an appropriately remunerated medical occupation and thus correspond to the remuneration of comparable German employees. In the hospital sector, this suggests the relevant union rate. If this requirement is not met, the doctor will not be permitted to take the specialist examination in most councils.

Social security and tax law: Social contributions and payroll taxes must be paid on the owed salary by the doctor.

Many foreign doctors who assist with patient care in German hospitals or outpatient facilities aren't conscious of the legal classification of their respective activities and therefore the consequences. The reasons given by the hospitals for these forms of employment are different: for example, the chief doctor would like to get an idea of whether he or she is suitable for completing further training, or the language skills should be improved or help should be provided in preparation the knowledge test.

Is it Job shadowing (Hospitation), Internship, or Regular Employment?

The following criteria can be used to define a distinction between Job shadowing (Hospitation), an Internship and Regular Employment:

Job shadowing: According to this, shadowing or Hospitation is a “purely observational activity by as yet unapproved participants, who only perform some medical activities in the interest of learning and is usually for a few days, weeks or months."

For the definition of this "work shadowing", it is therefore important that the shadower primarily observes and does not work in the sense of medically treating the patient.

In the case of the work shadowing relationship, the main target is on acquiring knowledge and skills through observation. They are subject only to domiciliary rights, but not to the management right of the business owner."

A compensation claim is not possible, not even on the minimum wage pursuant .The doctor is usually given a job shadowing contract.

This is an option for a doctor when he doesn’t have any option left for him in Germany and is trying to just pass his time in Germany as his process is in a limbo.


Interns are subject to the employer's right of action. For this reason, interns are not shadowers , but undertake restricted responsibility at work. They are guests in a company with limited responsibilities so as to learn the working methods without being legally employed themselves.

A compensation claim is possible, with no minimum wage pursuant .The doctor is given an internship contract. Internship can be paid or unpaid in accordance to the contract.

Regular Employment:

In all cases where there is neither shadowing nor internship and the doctor has fulfilled the necessary documentary requirements, an employment relationship with the corresponding legal consequences must be given in the affirmative.

A compensation claim is possible, with standard wage pursuant .The doctor is given a legal job contract which is acknowledged and recognized for his further process in Germany.


Doctors-the specialist language examination (Fachsprachprüfung – FSP)

For the granting of a license to practice medicine (temporary license), it is a prerequisite that the applicant has the knowledge of the German language required to carry out the professional activity.

Special language examination for doctors- Fachsprachenprüfung exam

According to the decision of the 87th Conference of Ministers of Health on June 26/27, 2014, doctors must have specialist language skills in a job-specific context based on language level C1 based on the proven basis of language level B2 according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (GER-B2).

From the year 2014 most of the State Medical Councils in Germany implemented specialist language examination for foreign doctors known popularly as Fachsprachprüfung.

Fachsprachenprüfung is an exam which needs to be taken by every International doctor who wants to do practice as a doctor in Germany and also aims to start their medical specialization in Germany.

Fachsprachenprüfung is normally exam to test doctor’s medical German Terminology knowledge. After successfully passing FSP exam a doctor gets temporarily license to work in Germany also known as Berufserlaubnis. There are unlimited attempts for Fachsprachenprüfung ( FSP).

This exam relates exclusively to the specialist language skills and not to basic medical knowledge, i.e. an incorrect diagnosis or a missed treatment option are not included in the evaluation, only the linguistic handling of each medical situation.

What is the exam pattern of Fachsprachenprüfung?

This exam is including practical and viva module consists of three different steps. Duration of exam will be 60 Min. The whole exam will be in German language only.

The exam is designed to be practical. It takes the form of an individual exam and is used to determine the specialist language skills required for the medical profession in oral and written communication. The examination board consists of three members, at least two of whom are doctors.

The exam is divided into three parts, each lasting approximately 20 minutes. At the beginning, the examination board introduces itself and asks you to introduce yourself briefly (previous career, further goals).

1. Doctor-patient interview (Arzt-Patienten-Gespräch)

You conduct an anamnesis interview with a patient, as you are familiar with in your everyday treatment. The role of the patient is assumed by a member of the examination board. This will give you predetermined information about his state of health. You can take notes on this, if necessary also in your mother tongue. Explain your suspected diagnoses to the patient and make suggestions for further examination methods/ treatment options. Respond to possible questions from the patient. A language that is understandable for patients and their relatives (i.e. medical laypersons) should be selected.

2. Written documentation / medical report (Schriftliche Dokumentation/Arztbericht)

In the second part, you should document the medical history and the further procedure in writing and in German in full sentences. You will receive a prepared structured form for this. You can use the recordings you made during the doctor-patient consultation. A medical dictionary is also made available. No other aids may be used. The aim is to meet the general documentation requirements and to provide comprehensive, comprehensible information to the doctors who are treating you.

3. Doctor-doctor discussion (Arzt-Arzt-Gespräch)

In the next part, you will introduce the patient to a medical colleague during a handover interview. You pass on the information obtained in the doctor-patient discussion to a medical member of the examination board. They discuss suspicious and differential diagnoses, diagnostic measures and therapies. Here the German medical vocabulary must be used in the sense of the medical terminology.

Duration: 2 months / 186 units

Timings: - Monday to Thursday, 9:00 to 2:00 p.m.

-Friday 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Who is eligible to take Fachsprachenprüfung exam?

The doctor

✔ Who has completed a B2/C1 level of the German language.

✔ Have a valid medical degree/defizitbescheid.

✔ Has a job contract from a clinic in that state.

Then he/she can take this exam. This exam is taken by the respective state medical council of Germany where the doctor has the job contract and wants to practice after completion of all formalities.

Where to give Fachsprachenprüfung exam?

This exam is a part of the way to get Approbation (Permanent License). Once the doctor decides particular German state where they want to practice then they need to submit all required documents to state medical council for Temporary (Berufserlaubnis) or Permanent License (Approbation). After verification of all documents, authorities will provide exam date for Fachsprachenprüfung (FSP) exam.

How much does the Fachsprachprüfung exam cost?

The fees for the Fachsprachprüfung exams vary between providers. They are currently between € 350 for the specialist language examination of the State Medical Association of North Rhine and € 530 for the technical language examination of the State Medical Association of Bremen.

Since the fees can change at any time, it is strongly recommended to inquire about the current status with the responsible provider. Please also note that you cannot choose the provider freely, but must meet the language requirements of the relevant licensing authority.

Lack of Medical Specialists in Germany

More than 95,000 doctors who have immigrated from foreign land are already working in German hospitals. Without them, the high standard of medical care in Germany would be at risk. On the one hand there are not enough medical specialists in Germany, many young doctors want a safe and secured life with greater opportunities. This is why more and more doctors from abroad decide to share their experience and qualifications at a German hospital and are enriching the German healthcare system.

Consequently, the professional and especially the linguistic integration of immigrant doctors in German hospitals are a very important and a challenging task. But there are requirements for physicians to be fulfilled on the way to their professional admission in Germany.

In addition to the B2 certificate, they often have to take a specialist language examination (Fachsprachprüfung – FSP) on the C1 level. Furthermore, they must also be prepared for the examination on Medical knowledge. That way, doctors can therefore be successful in their recognition procedure.

What is trained in the course?

In the course, doctors train the communication between doctor and patient and the professional discussion with other doctors. In addition, anamnesis and doctor’s letters are coached. The high level of the course requires a B2 language level in order to be successful. But then international doctors can improve their professional German language skills and optimize communication in their daily work.A good course is always goal-oriented.

It prepares for the Medical Association’s examination (Fachsprachprüfung – FSP), as it is mandatory for a foreign doctor in Germany to take this exam and qualify in it. Consequently, it is recommended to complete the medical course with an examination, e.g. with the Telc examination B2/C1.

The high linguistic level of the course means that doctors are well prepared for their work in Germany. It guarantees safety for the patients, hospitals and excellent job opportunities. After all, it is a great support for foreign physicians in their new environment.

Goal of the training

The course on medical terminology and communication is aimed at physicians who wish to work as doctors in Germany and who have to pass a test of their specialist language skills.

Among other things, the following contents are part of the advanced training:

Anamnesis recording, patient introduction, patient information and the writing of medical reports.

Our preparation course prepares you orally and in writing to the specialized language exam before. The specific vocabulary is assumed or can be developed in parallel self-study.

Course Focus

✔ Oral communication (doctor-patient conversations, doctor-doctor conversations).

✔ Written communication (medical report).

✔ Talk structures, dialogue patterns used in role-playing games.

✔ Reading and listening comprehension of different topics.

✔ Specific grammar (subjunctive, nominal style, past, Passive).

✔ Guided self-study, feedback, correction - exam simulations.


Irrespective of your current professional degrees, if you want to work as a Doctor in Germany, you have to give the medical license exam called "Kenntnisprüfung".

Yes, medical license is mandatory for residency to make the degree of foreign graduates equivalent to German Medical Degree which German graduates gets right after their Graduation.

Non-EU Medical graduates should pass the permanent license exam called “Kenntnisprüfung” for recognition of their degrees and practicing in German.

Germany is composed of 16 independently governed states, where the laws differ from state to state. The temporary work permit is called "Berufserlaubnis" which allows to work in any Hospital inside the territory of the same state until Approbation. Duration of work permit is maximum 2 years.

As mentioned above, except some states, according to overall German legislation, to acquire medical license diploma recognition exam (Kenntnisprüfung ) is compulsory.

You must first get temporary work permit and work in one of clinics in Germany. It is necessary to be able to take the exam. After preparing your documents, you must apply to sit for the exam in a state where you work and reside.

Exam is usually taken on three major subjects in all states, students cannot choose subjects. Internal medicine and surgery subjects are a fixed part of the exam in all states and cannot be changed.

Exams are usually easy to pass. Taking into consideration that students are foreigners and speak German at B2 level, they will be given a chance. Although the exam asks questions on three different subjects, most of the questions are related to intended residency area. For example, if you want to choose ophtalmology as a residency area, you will be mainly asked from internal diseases subject, head and eye diseases and from general surgery subject about operations on mentioned organs.

If you fail to pass the exam, you will have two more chances. You would not be able get physician license in Germany any more if you fail in the third time.

The foreign doctor has to prove that he has the same knowledge that is required by local graduates from medical universities. The focus of the examination has been on the subjects of internal medicine and surgery. The questions should also take the following aspects into account: emergency medicine, clinical pharmacology / pharmacotherapy, imaging procedures, radiation protection, and legal questions relating to medical practice. In addition, the competent authority can determine a subject or a cross-sectional area as relevant for the exam in advance of the examination, in which it has identified significant differences between medical training in Germany and the training of the applicant.

The Kenntnissprüfung is an oral-practical test with patient presentation and takes between 60 and 90 minutes. It can be repeated a maximum of two times. The applicant must be offered an appointment for the knowledge test within six months of the decision. Unfortunately, this period is often exceeded.

The fees for the Kenntnissprüfung vary between the individual federal states. They range from € 350 in Schleswig-Holstein to € 1,100 in Hesse or Rhineland-Palatinate.

Since the fees can change at any time, it is strongly recommended that you inquire with the responsible authority about the current examination fees.

The competent body will first check your degree here: Is your degree in human medicine / dentistry / pharmacy equivalent to a corresponding German degree? The criteria are: Are there significant differences between the content of German and foreign training? Can differences be compensated by professional experience?

The technical and content comparison is based on the essential characteristics of German training. The comparison is based on the teaching events of the respective license and their content. It is also checked whether subjects and their contents may have been taught as components of other subjects. It is therefore necessary to submit a detailed study book. If this is not available in a translated form, the equivalence of your training cannot be determined.

In order to check the equivalence, an external expert or the expert opinion for health professions at the central office for foreign education is used.

If all other requirements are met, such as if you have sufficient knowledge of German, you will be granted a license to practice- Approbation.

In this case, the main differences will be notified. You can then take an exam- Kenntnissprüfung.

If your degree is not equivalent and you have a degree from one of the other member states of the European Union or from another state party to the Agreement on the European Economic Area or Switzerland, you must take an aptitude test that is limited to the essential differences.

This also applies if you have proof of education that was issued in a third country and that another member state of the European Union or another signatory to the Agreement on the European Economic Area or Switzerland has recognized. If your degree is not equivalent and you have a degree from a so-called third country, you must take a knowledge test that relates to the entire content of the state final examination.

In these cases, the competent authority can first issue a temporary license.

Course Type: The course prepares you comprehensively for the knowledge test.

(Approbation) and consists of an introductory day, a 4-week self-learning phase and a 10-week training phase.

Duration: 3 months / 200 units

Target group: International doctors with German language skills at B2 level who want to prepare optimally for their knowledge test.

Levels: C1 according to GER

Contents: The training begins with an introduction to learning with "Amboss", followed by a 4-week self-learning phase.

In the subsequent 10-week face-to-face training with doctors as lecturers, we teach specialist terminology, oral / written communication and case studies with practical exercises in the following areas:

  • Internal Medicine
  • Intensive care and emergency medicine
  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics examination
  • Medical history and physical examination
  • Imaging procedures
  • Patient Presentation
  • Clinical pharmacology/toxicology
  • Radiology, nuclear medicine, radiation protection
  • Medical law

Requirements: B2 certificate and medical degree.

  • ID / Passport.
  • Evidence of the recognition procedure (Defizitbescheid).

List Of Specialization

Specialization branches

The following examples aim to explain the summary table "Facharzt- und Schwerpunktkompetenz" (Specialist and Specialty Competence). They specify the minimum time needed for four different "Facharzt" (Specialist) qualifications. At the end of each Specialist, Specialty or Extra Qualification course, the trained doctor must document the required disciplinary competencies by passing an examination in order to gain the relevant title: Specialist, Specialty or Extra Qualification.

1. Internal Medicine and General Medicine

Continuing training in the fields of "Internal and General Medicine" lasts (a total of) at least:

  • 60 months (5 years) for disciplinary competence (Fachkompetenz) as a "General Practitioner".
  • 72 months (6 years) for specialist competence (Facharztkompetenz) as an "Internist"
  • 72 months (6 years) for specialist competence (Facharztkompetenz) as an "Internist + Additional disciplinary competencies (e.g. Internist and Pneumologist)"

2. Surgery

To gain the specialist competencies listed in the table for the field of "Surgery", a doctor must initially complete at least 24 months (2 years) of basic continuing training. This is then followed by specialist continuing surgical training in the desired field. The choice of specialist competencies in the field of surgery are: General Surgery, Vascular Surgery, Cardiac Surgery, Pediatric Surgery, Orthopedics and Trauma Surgery, Plastic and Aesthetic Surgery, Thorax Surgery and Visceral Surgery.

In other words: A doctor wishing to gain qualification as a Facharzt (Specialist) in the field of thorax surgery must, for example, complete at least 24 months of basic continuing training plus at least 48 months of subsequent specialist continuing training in thorax surgery. This means 24 months + 48 months = a minimum of at least 72 months (6 years).

3. Anaesthesiology

A doctor must complete at least 60 months (5 years) of continuing medical training to qualify as an Anesthetist.

4. Pediatrics

Continuing training in the field of Pediatrics lasts at least 60 months. After passing the final examination, the qualified doctor is given the title: "Facharztfür Kinder- und Jugendmedizin" "Pediatrician". Subsequent specialization, for example in the field of "Neuropaediatrics / Child Neurology", takes at least 36 months and is completed with a further examination.

Summary Table of Specialist and Speciality Competence

The following table lists the minimum times required for medical continuing training in the Various medical fields and Specialty Competencies. Remarks: The figures listed in this table are based on the German Medical Association. The study regulations of the State Medical Associations may differ slightly

Field Specialist and Specialty Competence

Number of Months

1. Anaesthesiology



2. Anatomy



3. Industrial Medicine

Occupational Medicine

Specialist in Industrial Medicine Specialist in   Occupational Medicine


4. Ophthalmology



5. Biochemistry



6. Surgery

6.1 Specialist in General Surgery

24 Basis+48

6.2 Vascular Surgeon

24 Basis+48

6.3 Cardiac Surgeon

24 Basis+48

6.4 Pediatric Surgeon

24 Basis+48

6.5 Orthopedic and Trauma Surgeon

24 Basis+48

6.6 Plastic and Aesthetic Surgeon

24 Basis+48

6.7 Thorax Surgeon

24 Basis+48

6.8 Visceral Surgeon

24 Basis+48

7. Gynecology and Obstetrics

Gynecologist and Obstetrician



– Gynecological Endocrinology and Reproductive Medicine

60 Basis+36

– Gynecological Oncology

60 Basis+36

– Special Obstetrics and Perinatal Medicine

60 Basis+36

8. Ear-Nose-Throat Medicine

8.1 Ear-Nose-Throat Specialist

24 Basis+36

8.2 Speech, Voice and Pediatric Hearing Disorders – Phoniatrician

24 Basis+36

9. Drmatological and

Venereal Diseases

Dermatologist and Venereologist


10. Human Genetics

Human Geneticist


11. Hygiene and Environmental Medicine

Hygiene and Environmental Medicine Specialist


12. Internal and General Medicine

12.1 Internist

(General Practitioner)


12.2 Internist:


12.3.1– Internist and Angiologist


12.3.2–Internist and Endocrinologist and



12.3.3– Internist and



12.3.4– Internist and Haematologist and



12.3.5– Internist and Cardiologist


12.3.6– Internist and Nephrologist


12.3.7– Internist and Pneumologist


12.3.8 – Internist and Rheumatologist


13. Pediatrics




– PaediatricHaematology and Oncology

60 Basis+36

– Pediatric Cardiology

60 Basis+36

– Neonatology

60 Basis+36

– Neuropaediatrics / Child Neurology

60 Basis+36

14. Pediatric Psychiatry     and Psychotherapy

Pediatric Psychiatrist and Psychotherapist


15. Laboratory Medicine

Laboratory Medicine Specialist


16. Microbiology, Virology and Infection Epidemiology

Microbiologist, Virologist and Infection Epidemiologist


17. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon


18. Neurosurgery



19. Neurology



20. Nuclear Medicine

Nuclear Medicine Specialist


21. Public Health

Public Health Specialist


22. Pathology

22.1 Neuropathologist

24 Basis+48

22.2 Pathologist

24 Basis+48

23. Pharmacology

23.1 Clinical Pharmacologist

24 Basis+36

23.2 Pharmacologist and Toxicologist

24 Basis+36

24. Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Specialist



25. Physiology



26. Psychiatry and Psychotherapy

Psychiatrist and Psychotherapist


– Forensic Psychiatrist

60 Basis+36

27. Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy

Psychosomatic Medicine Specialist and Psychotherapist



28. Radiology





– Pediatric Radiology

60 Basis+36

– Neuroradiology

60 Basis+36

29. Forensic Pathology

Forensic Pathologist


30. Radiation Therapy


Radiation Oncologist



31. Transfusion Medicine

Transfusion Medicine Specialist


32. Urology



Summary Table of Extra Qualifications

In addition to medical continuing training and qualification in the Specialties, doctors wishing to further specialize can gain an Extra Qualification. The minimum time needed for the individual disciplinary competencies is as follows:

As already mentioned above, such Extra Qualification is not counted as part of the time prescribed for training as a specialist. The following special competencies are gained, inparticular, by completing an Extra Qualification course.

Extra Qualifications

Number of Months (m) / Hours (h)

Medical Quality Management

200 h


120 h + 60 h +20 h


18 m


18 m

Occupational Health

36 h + 360 h

Dermatological Histology

24 m


18 m

Aviation Medicine

6 m + 180 h

Geriatric Medicine

18 m

Gynecological Exfoliative Cytology

No proof of minimal continuing training hrs required


12 m

Hand Surgery

36 m


6 m +160 h


12 m

Intensive Care

24 m

Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetology

36 m

Pediatric Gastroenterology

18 m

Pediatric Nephrology

36 m


18 m


36 m

Pediatric Rheumatology

18 m

Laboratory Diagnosis– subject specific –

6 m

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) – subject specific –


24 m

Manual Medicine/Chirotherapy

120 h +200 h

Pharmacological tumour therapy

12 m

Medical Information Systems

12 m +360 h +480 h


3 m / or 80 h + 160 h

Emergency (Trauma) Medicine

6 m + 80 h + proof of 50 emergency (trauma) care assignments

Orthopedic Rheumatology

36 m

Palliative Medicine

12 m + 40 h


18 m

Physical Therapy and Balneology

12 m + 240 h

Plastic Operations

24 m


12 m


250 h + 240 +600 h

Psychotherapy – subject specific –

100 h + 16 double hr + 15 double hr + 15 double hr + 120 h +100 h + 120 h + 16 double + 15 double hr +15

double hr +15 double +120 h + 100 h.

Rehabilitation Medicine

12 +160 h + 160 h

X-ray Diagnostics – subject specific –

18 m and/or 12 m (depending on the subject)

Sleep Medicine

18 m

Social Medicine

12 m +160 h +160 h

Special Orthopedic Surgery

36 m

Special Pain Therapy

12 m + 80 h

Special Trauma Surgery

36 m

Sports Medicine

12 m +240 h +120 h

Addiction Medicine

50 h

Tropical Medicine

12 h +12  h +3 m


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