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- Health care in Germany
SBK bears the costs of all medically necessary treatments
There are many reasons to see a doctor, from vaccinations to counselling, medical examinations, diagnosis and the treatment of health conditions.
Ideally, you should always consult your GP in the first instance, as they will have a particularly good insight into you and your medical history. They will know which treatment, additional clinical diagnostics or specialists would be best for you. As an SBK customer, you are, of course, free to choose whether you want to see your GP first or go directly to a specialist.
If you always want to consult your GP first, then you can opt for GP-centred care. In this case, your GP will be your first port of call for all health-related concerns or conditions. They will then be able to refer you to a suitable specialist, should the need arise. This gives you the security of always being able to access the right specialist.
Generally speaking, you can consult a specialist without a referral. A referral is only important if your doctor is providing laboratory services or you are seeking medical diagnostics or treatment from practitioners of nuclear medicine, pathologists, radiologists, radiotherapists or transfusion physicians.
GP-centred care is also the exception here. If you choose this approach, you will need a referral from your GP in order to see a specialist.
A letter of referral is valid for the entire quarter in which it was issued. If the doctor named in the referral letter only begins treatment in the following quarter, the letter of referral issued in the previous quarter may still be used, provided that the insurant has a valid health care card at the time of treatment.
Many doctors offer their patients additional medical services that insurants must cover themselves. These are known as personalised healthcare services. The medical benefit of such services has not been sufficiently scientifically proven, so statutory health insurance does not usually cover them.
You can contact the doctor of your choice directly. All you have to do is show your SBK health care card and we’ll do the rest. A co-payment is not required for medical treatment.