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How to get sick in Germany


Not as easy as it sounds. Different countries have their own characteristics and their own algorithm of actions.

If you work in Germany and you get sick, then the first thing you should do … no, do not go to the doctor, but call the employer or the educational institution and say that you will not appear to study or work today. The notification is counted to you only if you made a call (at least sent an SMS or email) before the start of the working day.

If you do not appear at the workplace without warning, you will receive the first warning. Only two warnings are enough for your employer to have a legal right to fire you. With educational institutions, too, everything is not as you probably used to. There is a certain quota of hours (different for each university) that you must attend, they are then converted into points, on the basis of which you are given the final grade (or are not allowed to take the exam).

So you can soak in bed for 3 days, and for 4 you should already get a certificate from a doctor (Krankschreibung). But the employer may require it on the first day. If you are suspiciously often sick or posting photos from a party to your Instagram, while you need to be treated, then you will be asked for help on the first day. It is unlikely that you will be able to get it in the clinic for a chocolate bar.

From the good news – you get paid at the hospital, at a time when you drink tea with lemon before your favorite TV series. In Germany, this is the law.
How can you go to the doctor?

As soon as you come to the country, you need to find a therapist – Allgemeinarzt and become his account. When you get sick, you have these options:

Book an appointment with the therapist. Call your doctor or find in Google Allgemeinarzt (general therapist) in your area and sign up for it. But you can get an appointment after 3 days and after 3 weeks.
Go to the therapist without recording. First look at his work hours and go to the reception in the queue. Remember that in any case, you need to go to a general therapist, and he can already give out a referral to a doctor of narrow specialization.
If it is night then you can call 116 117 and call the doctor at home or get advice.
If everything is completely bad and none of the above options fit you, you can call an ambulance. Phone: 112 (same as firefighters).

How to pay for services?

In Germany, there are two types of insurance: public and private. Germans usually have state insurance (they don’t pay anything in hospitals), and visitors have a private (they pay with their own money, and then the insurance reimburses the costs).

The health care system in Germany is very good if you understand how the local bureaucracy works. The Germans are happy to go to the doctors, even with minor issues, because the treatment with pills from the pharmacy after consulting with a friend is not accepted here.

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