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Work and training abroad

The national ministries of health are usually the first point of contact for questions about obtaining a licence to practise or train abroad. National representative organisations can be sources of further information regarding speciality training and can provide details of the appropriate agencies to contact within the country. Certain countries have special registering authorities, for example medical councils, usually connected to the government department of health. Addresses may be found in our country directory. Please note that the country directory has been compiled from diverse sources, and does not represent an exhaustive list of all contact points.

Speciality training abroad

It is strongly advisable to contact the department responsible for speciality training at the State Chamber of Physicians (Landesärztekammer) of which you are a member before leaving the country to carry out your training abroad. However, it is important to bear in mind that they will not be able to guarantee that any period of speciality training carried out abroad will be recognised upon return to Germany.

The content and structure of speciality training differs considerably from country to country. Transferring part way through a programme to a comparable course in another country is not always possible.

Periods of speciality training can only be accredited in Germany if they have taken place for a minimum duration of 6 months in a paid junior position at an institution licensed for speciality medical training. The certificate issued upon completion of training should contain detailed information about the size of the hospital at which training took place, the activities of the department in which you were employed, as well as any activities carried out independently. The certificate should reflect the content of the speciality training regulations of the relevant State Chamber of Physicians.

The Department for International Affairs of the German Medical Association is often the first point of contact for physicians and patients seeking information from both Germany and abroad. The information provided by the Department for International Affairs as part of this service has a purely advisory character, and must not be considered as legally binding.

Please be aware that the German Medical Association is not authorised to recognise periods of speciality training or give legally binding information to third parties in individual cases. The State Chambers of Physicians, as corporations under public law, are the only bodies in Germany authorised to recognise periods of speciality training carried out abroad or foreign specialist diplomas. A physician must be a member of a State Chamber of Physicians before his or her specialist qualifications may be assessed for equivalence. For information concerning membership of the State Chambers of Physicians (compulsory or voluntary) please contact them directly.

The following links contain further information, as well as a list of national medical organisations and responsible authorities in other countries.

Finding work abroad

In order to find a suitable position abroad it is necessary to undertake comprehensive research.

For information concerning speciality training, it is advisable to contact the national medical association of the country in which you wish to train. In some countries there are special authorities responsible for registration. Our country directory of EU and non-EU countries contains lists of contact details for national medical associations and other relevant organisations abroad.

Advertisements for positions abroad may be found in the national medical journals, newspapers or on hospital websites, further information concerning which can be found by making enquiries through the responsible medical authorities of the country. References and links to the national medical press can often be found on the websites of the national medical associations.

Job advertisements abroad are also published in the jobs section of the German Medical Journal.

Other useful contacts:

Federal Employment Agency - Zentrale Auslands- und Fachvermittlung (ZAV):
Information Centre of the international service of the Federal Employment Agency
Tel.: + 49 228 713 1313
Email: Internationaler-Service@arbeitsagentur.de

Eures – European Job Mobility Portal
EURES provides information, advice and vacancy information for employers, jobseekers and citizens seeking training positions within the European Union.

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