Germany has one of the best healthcare systems in the world. The use of the very latest therapies and medical equipment helps guarantee an exceptionally high level of care. Increasing digitization is opening up new possibilities for medical care, as X-ray images and medical reports are available faster. And digitization is set to grow even faster, lowering costs and bringing continual improvements in healthcare. A dense network of clinics and doctors’ surgeries ensures that patients get the medical services they need rapidly. At the same time, physicians are held in great esteem by the German population. In surveys, the medical profession is consistently one of the most highly regarded in Germany, followed in second place by the nursing profession.

Career opportunities for doctors in Germany

In Germany, doctors work

  • in hospitals, generally as an employee
  • in their own medical practice
  • in large group practices, as an employee

In Germany, the average starting salary for medical graduates is higher than in any other field of study and currently lies at around €52,000 a year. On average, physicians in Germany are paid more than graduates of any other academic discipline.

German hospitals have had to contend with a shortage of physicians for quite a number of years now. There is a need throughout Germany for several thousand additional physicians. This demand will continue to rise in coming years, particularly as many hospital physicians are soon due to enter retirement.

In the field of private practice, there is primarily a need for general practitioners, particularly in eastern Germany and rural areas, where there are often difficulties recruiting physicians to fill practices as they become vacant. These shortages will soon spread to other regions of Germany and other areas of specialization, since here, too, many physicians are due to retire in coming years.

Foreign medical training

As of April 2012, if you have completed your medical training in a foreign country, you are eligible to receive a medical license in Germany, regardless of whether you are from an EU or a non-EU (third) country – provided that the training is equivalent to the German medical training. Further details are available at