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Coming to Vechta
Studies, research, short-term stay: We support you on your way to the University of Vechta and during your stay or studies.

Health insurance

As defined by law (§30 Abs. 1 SGB I), anyone who establishes their main residence in Germany needs to possess a valid health insurance ("Krankenversicherung"). This is true also for international researchers that come for a research stay to a University in Germany. Even for short stays, it is usually required to have a health insurance: the lack thereof almost certainly leads to problems in obtaining a visa. Moreover, in order to apply for a resident permit in Germany, the applicant is required to show proof of a valid health insurance. You should therefore start getting informed about health insurance packages already before traveling to Germany. EU citizens constitute an exception to this rule (please see relevant paragraph below).

In Germany there are two types of health insurance: public and private.

All researchers that sign a job contract with the university are insured through the public health insurance ("gesetzliche Krankenversicherung").

International researchers who receive a scholarship (and are not formally employed at the university), or who are financing their research stay via external funds or privately, may only get insured through a private health insurance ("private Krankenversicherung"). Please note that a private travel insurance usually is not enough, as it provides only a minimal coverage. If you are planning to stay more than 90 days, we warmly suggest you choose a normal (not a travel) insurance.

Your monthly contribution to the public health insurance will depend on your income and will be automatically detracted from your salary. Private insurance fees do not vary according to income, but depend on the coverage the insurance offers and on the individual risk profile (previous health conditions, etc.). In order to apply for a private health insurance, you will need to answer a series of questions about your health, age and work. You can find further information about public and private insurances in 40 different languages here.

EU citizen and citizens from countries that have signed social security agreements with Germany may get their national health insurance recognized in Germany. EU citizen hold (or may obtain) the European health insurance card as proof of insurance coverage at home.

To sum up, the following groups are exempted from the obligation of having a health insurance in Germany:

  • EEA citizens and citizens from states that have signed social security agreements with Germany: they can make use of their national health insurance even during their stay in Germany
  • EU citizens who hold a national health insurance from their home country: they can make use of their national health insurance services through the EU health insurance card. For more information, please visit this website.

You can find further information on the topic health insurance in Germany on the following websites:

If you need help with navigating the health insurance bureaucracy or have any other question on this topic, please contact us at the Welcome Centre! We will be happy to assist you!