Medical Treatment and Health Insurance for EU Citizens

For vacation or business trips the European Health Insurance Card is sufficient

If you have statutory health insurance in another EU country, you are entitled to medical treatment, hospital care, and medication in Germany in the case of acute illness. The patient presents the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) to the doctor or hospital as proof of insurance. A “provisional replacement certificate” (PEB) is also accepted.

Germany has no polyclinic treatment centers but instead an extensive network of general practitioners and specialists. They are independent and run their own practice. Patients chooses their own doctors. Click here to search for doctors in your area.

People with statutory health insurance are treated by “Kassenärzte” in Germany. These are doctors licensed by the statutory health insurance funds, and include most medical practices in Germany. A sign at the doctor’s office will usually say “Alle Kassen”. To be safe, you should ask before beginning treatment whether the doctor is a “Kassenarzt”.

People with statutory health insurance do not pay the doctor themselves. The doctor settles directly with the statutory health insurance provider. The same applies to those insured by a statutory health insurance fund in another EU country. However, this only applies to acute illnesses and only during temporary stays in Germany. The EHIC is not valid when traveling to Germany specifically for medical treatment.

At the doctor’s office, patients will need to present their EHIC and their passport or ID card. Those unable to show their EHIC must request a “provisional replacement certificate” (PEB) from their statutory health insurance fund in their home country and present it to the doctor.

Next, patients have to choose a German statutory health insurance fund to cover the costs. They can select any statutory health insurance fund. For this purpose, the physician will provide you with a “Patient Declaration of European Health Insurance” form and help you to fill it out.

The doctor then settles the cost of the treatment with the statutory health insurance fund. He may also issue referrals to specialists or to a hospital. If medication is prescribed, the patient will receive a “statutory health insurance prescription” which can be filled at any pharmacy. There will be a co-payment of between 5 and 10 euros.

Chronically ill patients and those who need specialized medical facilities during their stay should contact a statutory health insurance company in Germany before entering the country. They will be able to help in advance with planning, for example, to arrange dialysis.

Patients from EU and EEA countries, as well as Switzerland, are entitled to all medically necessary services during their stay. Students, posted workers, and job seekers can use the EHIC if their stay is temporary. However, as more extended stays are common for people from these groups, preventive medical examinations may also be medically necessary. If you have any questions about the scope of benefits, you should contact your chosen statutory health insurance provider.

Those who wish to visit the doctor as a “private patient” (Privatpatient) must take out guest insurance. This insurance is relatively inexpensive, and offers advantages for getting appointments. This is because doctors are paid more for the medical treatment of private patients. With guest insurance it is also possible to see private doctors who do not treat statutorily insured patients. Private insurance can alleviate a further disadvantage of statutory health insurance: The return transport to the home country in the case of serious illness is not paid for by statutory health insurance. Here the guest insurance would take over.

Take out guest insurance directly

Here you can calculate the cost of travel protection for foreign guests and take out travel insurance directly. The conclusion takes place online at HanseMerkur Krankenversichrung. You will receive a corresponding confirmation immediately.

Take out guest insurance

EU citizens traveling to another EU country for medical treatment
If you have statutory health insurance in another EU country and are traveling to Germany to receive medical treatment, you must contact a German statutory health insurance company before the start of the treatment using the E 112 or S2 form. The E 112 and S2 forms are issued by the statutory health insurance provider in the home country. The German statutory health insurance fund will then exchange the submitted form for a settlement slip which states the planned treatment and any restrictions. The patient then presents the settlement slip to the attending physician.

(The above rules apply to visitors from the EU/EEA/Switzerland: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland).

Special rules for visitors from countries with bilateral agreements
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Turkey, and Tunisia have entered into bilateral agreements on social security with the Federal Republic of Germany.  Visitors from these countries must first contact a statutory health insurance fund of their choice in Germany and present the proof of entitlement issued by the statutory health insurance provider in their home country. The German health insurance fund will then issue a settlement slip which the patient presents to the doctor before treatment begins.

Patient Declaration of European Health Insurance (PE)
The Patient Declaration of European Health Insurance must be presented to the attending physician along with the EHIC.

English-GermanPatient’s Declaration European Health Insurance
French-GermanDéclaration du Patient Assurance Maladie Européenne
PE Spanish-GermanhDeclaración del paciente seguro médico Europeo

Bulgarian-GermanДекларация на пациента Европейско здравно осигуряване
Danish-GermanPatienterklæring Europæisk Sygesikring
Greek-GermanΔήλωση ασθενούς Ευρωπαϊκή ασφάλιση ασθενείας
Italian-GermanDichiarazione del paziente Assicurazione malattia europea
Croatian-GermanIzjava pacijenta Europsko zdravstveno osiguranje
Dutch-GermanPatiëntenverklaring Europese Zorgverzekering
Polish-GermaEuropejskie ubezpieczenie zdrowotne – oświadczenie pacjenta
Romanian-GermanDeclaraţie a pacientului Asigurarea europeană de sănătate
Czech-GermanProhlášení pacienta Evropské zdravotní pojištění
Hungarian-GermanEurópai Egészségbiztosítási betegnyilatkozat