Call for Germany to speed up recognition of foreign doctors

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Call for Germany to speed up recognition of foreign doctors

Doctors from abroad who want to work in Germany should have their qualifications recognized more quickly, the German Medical Association has said, reported dpa.

"There is undoubtedly a likelihood of long waiting times or delays due to the complex recognition procedure," said Ellen Lundershausen, the association's vice president.

According to the association, the number of doctors in Germany without German citizenship reached a new high of just under 64,000 at the end of last year. Nevertheless there is still a great demand for doctors in many regions of the country.

Lundershausen told dpa that the cooperation between the various authorities required for a foreign doctor to start working in Germany "could certainly be improved."

However, the main problem is the necessity of individually checking the equivalence of medical studies undertaken in the doctor's country of origin.

"Recognition procedures take a long time if the documents are not complete or the authorities' staff resources do not allow for a quick check … Staffing levels at the authorities are lagging behind," she said.

There is a joint assessment body based in Bonn specifically for this purpose, but its director, Carola Dörfler, also admitted that the equivalence assessment can take "six months, eight months or, in a few cases, up to a year."

The recent increase in the number of applicants from Turkey and Ukraine in particular has led to a backlog, she said.


  1. Carolyn Smith says

    Is there a plan in place to streamline the recognition process for foreign doctors in Germany?

    1. David Johnson says

      Yes, the German Medical Association is calling for faster recognition of foreign doctors’ qualifications to address the delays in the system. Ellen Lundershausen highlighted the need for improvements in cooperation between authorities and faster equivalence checks of medical studies. The process could be expedited to help meet the demand for doctors in various regions. Let’s hope for more streamlined procedures in the near future.

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