Everyone living in Germany is required to have health insurance. This insurance must cover medical treatment for acute illnesses and accidents in Germany.
We recommend getting traveler’s health insurance for the first few days in Germany.
Your insurance scenarios will depend on the details of your personal situation in Germany (i.e., work contract, studies, scholarship, age, stay with or without family, etc.). We recommend that you take out a German health insurance policy.
Please contact us, and we will be happy to advise you!
The services provided by public health insurance are largely fixed. There are slight differences with regard to customer service, additional services, and elective tariffs. There are uniform, nationwide monthly premiums that are set according to your income. Furthermore, health insurance companies are raising additional individualized contribution rates.
Family members traveling with you can be insured under your plan at no additional charge (family insurance). The prerequisite for this coverage is that your family members must also live in Germany and must not have their own income (at least not over 450 € per month).
Public health insurance companies must accept insured persons with all pre-existing conditions, and they must also cover the full cost of pre-existing conditions from the first day of coverage.
Every publicly-insured person receives a chip card that must be presented at the first visit to a doctor each quarter.
There are a number of private health insurance companies in Germany that offer various packages depending on age and profession. Some insurance companies offer special products for international visiting scholars and scholarship holders.
Unlike the public insurance companies, monthly premiums for private health insurance are not dependent on income. In general, the more comprehensive the coverage is, the higher the premium.
If you already have an illness before you arrive in Germany, please keep in mind that pre-existing conditions are not covered by private health insurance companies in Germany and that you will have to cover any costs arising therefrom yourself. Private insurance does not cover costs for pregnancy examinations and childbirth if conception occurred before arriving in Germany. Please examine the prices and services offered by private insurance companies very carefully and ask for advice if you need it before signing an insurance contract!
Private patients are invoiced directly by physicians. Patients must then pay the invoice directly and request reimbursement from their private insurance company.
Your personal situation in Germany will determine what kind of health insurance is the optimal fit for you. The length of your stay plays a role in this decision, as well as the question of whether you are traveling alone or with family, and whether you have already worked in Germany before.
If you receive a German work contract, you normally have to be insured by a public health insurance company. The uniform rate for all employees in Germany who are insured by a public health insurance company is 14.6% of gross salary, plus a supplementary contribution of 0.8% to 1,5% that varies by insurance company (as of January 1, 2019). Monthly premiums for health insurance are deducted directly from your gross salary. The employer pays one half of the total premium, and the employee pays the remaining half of the contributions.
There are two exceptions to the legal obligation for employees to have public insurance:
Your European health insurance card is valid in Germany if you are only temporarily resident in Germany and have not traveled to Germany specifically for the purpose of medical treatment. The costs of return hospital transport are not covered.
For longer-term stays in Germany, the form E 106 or S1 applies instead of the European insurance card; you can get this form in advance from your domestic insurance company. This form enables you and if necessary your family to register with a German insurance company and receive the same benefits as German insurance company customers. The German health insurance company then invoices any costs directly to your domestic health insurance company.
University of Potsdam
Welcome Center Potsdam
Am Neuen Palais 10, bldg. 8, room 1.11
Tel.: +49 331 977-1382 | -153052