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Training in medicine

In the past, the German Science and Humanities Council (WissenschaftsratWR) regularly used its general recommendations to address the structure of university medicine and the respective training situation, which the WR considers unsatisfactory. Currently, it advocates that medical education be equally competence-oriented and practice-oriented as well as based on strict scientific standards.

Bolstering the scientific competence of future doctors is becoming increasingly important in light of ever-growing scientific insight. Scientific thought and action are required to find specific solutions for the choice of the right diagnostic, preventive and therapeutic measures for patients and to implement these solutions in an evidence-based manner. Finding and implementing these solutions in an evidence-based manner requires scientific thinking and action. The foundations for this, and thereby also for responsible medical practice, must be laid in medical school.

As part of its ongoing involvement in the development of medical training, and at the request of the Federal Ministry of Health (BMG) and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the WR appointed an independent expert commission in 2017. Its mandate was to develop recommendations for restructuring Medicine degree programmes and amending licensing regulations on the basis of the so-called Master Plan for Medicine Degree Programmes 2020. Thanks to this plan, the cornerstone for reforming medical training has been laid by science and healthcare policymakers both at the federal and state levels. The expert commission’s recommendations were published in 2018 and included an assessment of the financial and capacity-related effects of the planned reform.

Additional information:
Recommendations on the development of medical education in Germany based on a review of model medical degree programmes | Executive Summary (Drs. 4017-14_Executive-Summary), July 2014

Full German version:
Empfehlungen zur Weiterentwicklung des Medizinstudiums in Deutschland auf Grundlage einer Bestandsaufnahme der humanmedizinischen Modellstudiengänge (Drs. 4017-14), Juli 2014

In July 2019, the WR appointed a working group whose task it is to analyse the implementation status of the WR´s recommendations on the development of healthcare professions (2012) and, based on this, to make recommendations for further development. Find out more ...

The WR also first commented on quality assurance in medical education in Germany in 2016, including with regard to non-governmental institutions: Key Points on Non-State Medical Education in Germany | Position Paper (5100-16_engl), January 2016.
The WR considers it essential and directive for the path to the medical profession in Germany to require compliance with consistently rigorous standards and that it should only be possible to reach it through a medicine degree programme that meets university standards. Non-governmental programmes under German law should therefore undergo a compulsory concept review and institutional accreditation by the WR. As a voluntary measure, cross-border programmes under European law should also be offered the option of such accreditation by the WR.