My friend broke her finger on a recent weekend. She called me because she didn’t know where to go. I called a German friend who gave me a number that tells you which clinics are open.
She’s new in town, so I went with her to the emergency clinic across from the Ausländerbehörde (Thonbergklinik), just in case she needed some (bad) German. But they are not always the one to go to – you should always call the number above to check availability for that particular holiday or weekend. It’s a rotating system, like with certain pharmacies being open on certain Sundays.
The receptionist said she had no English, but she could say this very clearly and accent free: “You have to pay now.” My friend had traveler’s insurance. Hopefully she will be paid back after sending in the bill.
That said, it was surprisingly inexpensive. Or at least we thought so. If we were in the States, it would have cost upwards of $1000. It was only €81, and that was with a €13 extra charge for it being a Sunday. Of course, she’ll have to go back at least twice, but even if it costs another €100, she still comes out way ahead.
When I lived in the UK, it was £10 for an office visit and all prescriptions were £5. When I googled how much a broken finger costs in the UK, all that came up was what to do, not how much it would cost.
I heard lots of people complaining in the UK, but I think it’s pretty good overall. My friend had had to go to the doctor there and said the waiting time was several hours. In Germany, it didn’t even take that long.
When we were at the emergency clinic in Leipzig, we were in and out in about an hour, including getting a cast.
I hear so much about Obamacare being a disaster and, to be honest, I haven’t lived there in forever, so I don’t know, but it does seem more people are insured. What I have read is that you can’t be turned down for a pre-existing condition. That’s a big improvement.
What I can say is that our trip to the emergency clinic was not bad at all. Thank you Germany.
Have you had experiences at emergency clinics in Germany? Share them with us here.