In Germany both general practitioners and specialists are available to provide medical treatment. As a person insured with the AOK, you may select your doctor freely. Under the condition that this doctor is licensed to provide medical care as part of a statutory health care insurance.
Free choice of doctor
Your first contact point for medical issues: Your family doctor or GP. A family doctor is a general practitioner. He will select the necessary medical treatment that promises the greatest success. It could be that your family doctor transfers you to a specialist, if he thinks this is necessary from a medical point of view. And the AOK takes care of the costs. You can, however, also go directly to a specialist – a doctor with further recognised training in a specialist area, for example orthopaedics, gynaecology or dermatology. The AOK also takes care of these costs. The important thing is to take your AOK health card with you on every visit to the doctor.
Generally, we would recommend you to arrange an appointment with the surgery by telephone before going to the doctor’s. This way you can avoid unnecessary waiting times. Should it be an emergency, you can under certain circumstances be treated immediately in a hospital as an outpatient.