Germany attracts 59,000 medical tourists from 163 countries annually thanks to a central location in Europe and being a member of the EU. Despite minimal cost savings and no promotion within the medical tourism industry, Germany is a popular medical tourism destination for patients from the Netherlands (11.4%), France (10%), Austria (8%), Poland (8%) and Belgium (5.7%). These medical travellers seek cardiology, oncology and orthopaedics treatment. It is hoped that by continuing to offer experimental treatments, such as stem cell therapy, medical tourism in Germany can increase in the coming years. In addition, high quality, shorter waiting times and a possibility to combine a treatment with a holiday are offered.
|Localisation||Central mainland Europe. Borders with Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxemburg, France, Switzerland, Austria, Czech Republic and Poland|
|Biggest cities (population)||Berlin (3,416,255) Hamburg (1,770,629), Munich (1,311,573|
|Religion||Christianity (64%), atheism (29%), Islam (5%), Buddhism (0.25%), Judaism (0.25%), other (1.5%)|
|GDP||€ 2,453,806 million, 6.04% of the world’s GDP|
|Climate||maritime and continental. Average temperature in winter is 3°C and in summer is 22°C|
|Time zone||GMT +1, summer time GMT +2|
|Happy Planet Index (HPI)||51|
Germany has influences from both, Eastern and Western Europe due to its post World War II historical development. Nowadays, Germany has regained its positive reputation and is a democratic European country. Due to a large influx of Russian and Turkish emigrants, these languages are widely spread. However, English is not broadly spoken. Each of the 16 German states has its own cultural specialties, such as Bavarian cuisine offering white sausages and a wide variety of beers or the Cologne carnival in North Rhine-Westphalia.
Germany has a low level of violent crime and it ranks 16 in the GPI ranking. However, there are cases when extremist youth groups have attacked individuals for racial reasons.
Nationalities that do not need any visa arrangements for stays up to three months include citizens of EU, Schengen area, US, Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan and New Zealand. All other nationalities need visas to enter the country. Visas for medical treatment can also be obtained by presenting official letters from both the hospital in Germany and the doctor in the home country as well as a proof of financial capacity.
Germany has a central position in Europe and is easily accessible. Its extensive motorway system (Autobahn) is the third largest in the world. Germany also has a well-developed railway network with its InterCityExpress (ICE) connecting major German cities as well as destinations in neighbouring countries. There are more than 20 international airports situated in the biggest cities, which feature well-developed public transport systems, including buses, trams and subways.
Germany offers a wide range of tourist accommodation suited for any budget. One can find any lodging facility starting from high-standard hotels representing renowned international chains, such as Hyatt Regency, Starwood Hotels and Resorts, Marriott Hotels and Resorts, Rezidor Group or Accor Hotels in bigger cities to privately- owned inns in the countryside. With regards to medical tourism, many hospitals provide guest houses or offer assistance in finding apartments.
|Physicians per 10,000 population||34.00 (2006)|
|Nurses per 10,000 population||80.00 (2005)|
|GDP spent on health care||10.4% (2006)|
|Education period of doctors||7 years|
|Education period of specialists||additional up to 5 years|
The health care providers are divided in three groups, being public, private non-profit and private for-profit. In total, there are over 2,000 health care organisations. In 2002, around 54% of hospital beds were in the public sector, about 38% were run by private, non-profit organisations and some 8% were private, for-profit institutions.
It is compulsory to be insured in Germany. Around 88% of the population is covered by the state and 9% are privately insured due to a big supply of insurance companies and a high demand on specific treatment that is not covered by the regular insurance.
The German government announces reforms almost on a yearly basis in order to improve the health care system. Every two years, every hospital has to submit an online public report reflecting on the quality standards.
In 2007, 24.9 million tourists visited Germany with 59,000 medical tourists from 163 countries. It is estimated that revenue generated by medical tourism accounts for € 177 million out of the € 64 billion revenue of all hospitals in Germany. Even though the country is well known for its health care quality, Germany does not concentrate on promoting itself as a medical tourism hub at a governmental level. However, some hospitals promote themselves individually and in the lead up to 2011, the German National Tourism Board is aiming to encourage health and fitness tourism.
Germany is neighbouring many countries and the medical tourism flows are mainly small ones, coming from neighbouring countries. The inbound flows are the Netherlands (11.4%), France (10%), Austria (8%), Poland (8%), Belgium (5.7%), Middle East (5%), Russia (4.6%), Switzerland (4.3%), Italy (4%), UK (3.9%) and US (3.1%)
The main areas of medical specialisation in Germany include:
The top facilities have been selected using the following criteria’s, listed in order of importance: JCI Accreditation, ISQua accreditation, international orientation. In general national accreditation systems have not been taken into consideration, due to the fact that there are too many and judging them is out of the scope of this study. There are 10 JCI accredited health care providers in Germany. Internationally oriented facilities are:
Despite minimal cost savings and no promotion within the medical tourism industry, Germany attracts 59,000 medical tourists from 163 countries annually thanks to a central location in Europe and being a member of the EU. The most important flows are from the Netherlands (11.4%), France (10%), Austria (8%), Poland (8%) and Belgium (5.7%). It is hoped that by continuing to offer experimental treatment, such as stem cell therapy, medical tourism in Germany can increase in the coming years.
|Germany||DRK Kliniken||Herzogin-Elisabeth- Hospital||Klinikum Chemnitz GmbH|
|Location and website||Berlin www.drk-kliniken-berlin.de||Braunschweig www.heh-bs.de||Chemnitz www.klinikumchemnitz.de|
|Accreditations or certifications||JCI, EFQM, Pain free hospital||JCI||JCI|
|Capacity of hospital beds||1,350 beds (5 hospitals)||225 beds (3 clinics)||1,790 beds|
|Possible for accompanying person to stay in room||Yes, in the private rooms||No, but assistance with accommodation||Yes, in the private rooms|
|Medical tourists||Mostly expatriates but small amounts of British and Dutch||Not anymore, some cooperation with Norway until 5 years ago||Russians and Arabs|
|Number of medical staff doctors/nurses||>3,200 physicians, nurses and administration||220 physicians, nurses and administration||3,000 physicians, nurses and administration|
|Type of rooms available (prices)||Single rooms, double rooms. Prices vary (up to € 150 per day)||Single rooms, multi bedded rooms||Single rooms, multi-bedded rooms|
|International patient department||Yes, they organise all the arrangements||No||Yes|
|Adaptations to cultures and nations||Yes, in food and religious habits||No||Yes, in food|
|Languages spoken by staff||German and English||German and English||German, English, Russian and Arabic|
|Marketing of the facility/USP||Word of mouth, internet, congresses and agents||No international promotion, word of mouth is enough for the domestic target group||International agents represent the hospital in Russia and Arabic countries, at the moment it is still based on personal acquaintances but it is in development|
|Specialisations||Orthopaedics, urology, thorax surgery, gynaecology, cardiology, gastroenterology, neurology, ophthalmology, paediatrics and plastic surgery||Orthopaedics, haematology, oncology, gastroenterology, plastic surgery, general surgery and thyroid and vein surgery||Gynaecology and obstetrics, cardiology, digestive and metabolic diseases, blood diseases, stem cell transplantation, allergology, pulmonary diseases, sleep medicine and kidney diseases|
|Treatment||Average Price||DRK Kliniken||Klinikum Chemnitz GmbH|
|Lasik eye surgery||2,900||N/A||N/A|
Note: All prices are estimates, and may vary widely from source to source depending on services included in the estimate (i.e. doctor’s fees, hospitalisation, administration costs or the patient’s age and medical history). Due to non-disclosure strategies of the various locations, it was not possible to make a clear separation between those factors. All prices given for the specific facilities have been provided by the hospitals/clinics themselves via email or telephone contact. The prices are given in Euros (€).
N/A means either that treatment are not available in the specific hospital, that a price estimation cannot be found or that the medical facility did not disclose the information. For the average prices, printed literature has been used before researching sources on the internet.