Popular Profession


Future-proof in care

Thanks to the good living conditions in Germany, a large part of the population enjoys good health well into old age. With increasing life expectancy and aging of society with fewer and fewer young people starting their careers, the demand for professional care, as well as for basic medical care, also increases. Germany has a stable health system, however, trained nurses are more in demand and more important than ever. Hospitals, old people’s homes and other care facilities are always on the lookout for care workers with different levels of qualification to meet the increasing demand in the health and care professions. And demand is expected to continue to grow in the years to come. Would you like to become part of the stable German health system? Then find out here how to start your future-proof career in the care sector!

People are employed in the care of the elderly and the sick.
Over 40,000


As a nurse, you care for and look after people in every phase of life, the areas include:

  • Nursing
  • Pediatric nursing
  • Elderly care

Your tasks in the nursing area include the independent observation, advice, support and care of patients in an inpatient or outpatient environment. In addition, depending on the specialization and qualification, there is the documentation and evaluation of the nursing measures as well as the implementation of medical orders and assistance with medical measures. At the same time, as a nursing staff, you are available as a competent contact person for relatives.

Figures on nursing staff in Germany

1.7 million

Entry requirements for international nurses

Anyone who wants to work permanently in nursing professions in Germany needs a state license to practice the profession. As a rule, the following formal requirements must therefore be met in order to be allowed to work as a nurse in Germany:

Recognized qualification

Your qualification as a nurse, which you obtained in your country of origin, must be recognized in Germany. The authority responsible for you will check whether your professional qualification is equivalent to a German qualification. If this is not the case, you can take a knowledge test or an adaptation course to demonstrate an equivalent level of knowledge. The application for professional recognition is submitted to the competent authority in the federal state in which the employment is to take place. The German recognition granted there is valid throughout Germany.

Sufficient knowledge of German

Depending on the federal state, you need knowledge of level B2 or B1 according to the European Framework of Reference for Languages ​​(GER).

Health suitability

With a certificate from a German doctor, you must prove that you are physically and mentally healthy and therefore suitable for the profession of nurse.

Personal suitability / reliability

To prove your trustworthiness, you need proof of impunity. Depending on the situation, you have to provide this with a certificate of good conduct from your home country or a German police certificate .

For recognition, it is not the nationality that is decisive, but where the qualification was obtained. You can find all information on recognition, exams, adaptation courses and the relevant German authorities on the multilingual portal Recognition in Germany

Do i need a visa?

As a citizen of the European Union, Liechtenstein, Iceland, Norway or Switzerland you do not need a visa or none residence permit to work in Germany. Citizens of other countries need one residence permitto work in Germany. In the visa section you can find out more about the work visa for skilled workers .

Have the recognition of your Professional qualificationapplied for and the recognition body in Germany has determined that you lack qualifications for full recognition? Then find out whether the visa for the recognition of foreign professional qualifications is  a possible option for you.

Tip: Under certain conditions, you can travel to Germany with a completed vocational training for 6 months to look for a job. Find out more about this under Visa to find a job .


Start the recognition process

In our Recognition section , you can find out everything about the recognition of foreign qualifications.

Apply now

Use our tips for a successful application in Germany.

German Language

Get in our German learn important tips on how and where you learn best German!

Good to know

There are some interesting projects that offer special opportunities to work as a nurse from abroad in Germany:

Project Triple Win

The project Triple Win to attract foreign nurses for the German labor market from the Federal agency for work (BA) carried out together with GIZ. Are the basis of the project Mediation agreements (International professionals can use the Federal agency for work be recruited via mediation agreements before an equivalence of the foreign Professional qualification with a Reference occupationwas established. This is possible under certain conditions that are regulated by law ( BeschV – §2 placement agreements ) the BA with the employment services of the partner countries Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, the Philippines and Tunisia. The partner administration designs the application process on site and checks the applications according to formal criteria. The BA determines the applicant’s personal, technical and linguistic qualifications through personal selection interviews. A language test is part of the selection process. In particular, GIZ offers the linguistic qualification of the nursing staff (level B1 of the Common European Framework of Reference with technical language for nursing), the professional preparation for the work assignment in Germany as well as the integration support and support with the recognition after the arrival in Germany, until your foreign qualification in the field of health and nursing is recognized,

Project “Care in Germany”

An offer from Federal agency for work (BA) for Nurses from Mexico

The Federal agency for work is looking for qualified health and nursing staff from Mexico for companies in the health sector in Germany in cooperation with the National Employment Office Mexico. The “Care in Germany” project opens up opportunities for interested care workers from Mexico for new professional perspectives. German employers in the healthcare sector present their employment offers at various locations and dates in Mexico.

Anyone wishing to take part in the project should be accordingly mobile, be interested in working abroad and be willing to acquire German language skills in 12 months. A degree from a Mexican university is also compulsory. On the way to Germany, the nursing staff receive a wide range of support – for example through the financing of language courses in Mexico and Germany, assistance with the application for a visa and professional recognition.

How can you take part in the project? What specific offers does the project include? Who can I turn to if I have any questions? Find out more about the “ Care in Germany ” project of the Federal agency for work and the Mexican Labor Administration.

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