Health insurance for visiting scientists in Germany

Everyone who stays in Germany for a longer period of time must have health insurance. This is the law in Germany and applies to everyone, including you as a visiting scientist. There are two types of health insurance in Germany: The statutory health insurance and the private health insurance. We would like to explain to you which type of health insurance you need as a visiting scientist.

Do you already have health insurance in your home country?

If you already have health insurance at home that is accepted by authorities and universities, you may not need new health insurance. If you come from a European country, more precisely from a Schengen country, chances are good that your home health insurance will be accepted in Germany.

In any case, you should check with your health insurance company whether it is accepted in Germany and whether it offers sufficient health coverage. If your home health insurance is not sufficient for your stay in Germany, you should know the following:

Visiting scientist with scholarship

If you are coming to Germany as a visiting scientist as part of a funding program, you should find out whether the funding organization will cover your health insurance. If this is not the case, you will have to take care of your own health insurance in Germany. Since visiting scientist with a scholarship are not considered regular employees, you cannot take out statutory health insurance, but need private health insurance.

Self-funded visiting scientists

If you belong to the group of visiting scientists who finance their stay in Germany completely by themselves, i.e. you do not have a scholarship or a German employment contract, you also need private health insurance.

Visiting scientist with German employment contract

If you have signed an employment contract for your work and are thus employed by the German university, you are an employee in Germany. This means that you usually have to have a statutory health insurance.

However, it may be possible for you to take out private health insurance as an employee, such as our Provisit Science, under the following conditions:

  • If your earnings as a visiting scientist in Germany exceed 64,350 € per year (as of 30.03.2022) and
  • If your stay in Germany has a time limit and
  • If you or your co-insured family members have not had any examinations or treatment for serious illnesses in the last few years.

The private comprehensive health insurance Provisit Science

There are many private health insurances. You can find them on the internet under terms like "travel health insurance" or "international health insurance". But these are not the insurances you need as a visiting scientist. What you need is a so-called "substitutive, private health insurance". What does that mean?

The purpose of a traditional travel health insurance policy is usually to provide you with additional coverage during your travels in case you need medical treatment during your stay abroad. Simply put, it only pays for the bare essentials.

Comprehensive health insurance of course exists to pay your medical bills, too, but it does more than that: its mission is also to keep you healthy. That means it pays not only for doctor visits and hospital stays, but also for preventive measures, such as early detection examinations or general health checks.

Since you will be staying in Germany for a longer period of time as a visiting scientist, you should opt for a comprehensive health insurance like our Provisit Science in the interest of your health.