Every person with statutory health insurance has the right to free medical check-ups. Screening focuses on diseases that are easy to treat if detected early. These include the most common causes of death, namely cardiovascular diseases and tumours. Early detection of disease and cancer has been part of the benefits catalogue of the statutory health insurance (GKV) since the seventies.
The number of those who make use of such examinations is low: only just under 50 percent of all women (aged 20 and over) regularly undergo early cancer screening, while the figure for eligible men (aged 45 and over) is less than 20 percent. Only 17 percent of all women and men use the option of a health check-up every two years from the age of 35.
Here is an overview of the preventive medical check-ups paid for by the statutory health insurance funds:
Early detection of cancer
- Genital examination (annually) for cervical cancer in women from the age of 20 years or more.
- Breast examination (annually) for women aged 30 and over
- Mammography screening (every two years) for women from the age of 50 until the end of their 70th year of life.
- Prostate examination, genital examination (annual), palpation examination of lymph nodes in men aged 43 and older
- Full-body examination of the entire skin of women and men aged 35 and over
- Colon and rectal examination (annually), test for hidden blood (annually up to the age of 54 years) for women and men from the age of 50 years, men from the age of 50 years: Two colonoscopies every 10 years, test for concealed blood every two years, women aged 55 and over: Two colonoscopies every 10 years, test for hidden blood every two years.
- Skin cancer screening every two years from the age of 35 years
Check-up (every two years) for women and men aged 35 and over: Full body examination with blood pressure measurement, blood samples to determine blood sugar and cholesterol levels, urine examination, detailed consultation with the doctor.
Preventive dental check-ups
Examination for tooth, mouth and jaw diseases (once per calendar half-year) in girls and boys aged 6 to 18 years, up to 6 years: three examinations
Dental check-ups (once per calendar half-year) for women and men from the age of 18. This also applies if a tartar removal, X-ray examination or sensitivity test has been carried out during the same session.
Vaccinations are part of the benefits catalogue of the statutory health insurance. In addition, health insurers can cover the costs of certain travel vaccinations.
Regular vaccinations for infants, children and adolescents, which every child should receive: Hepatitis B, diphtheria, tetanus, poliomyelitis, Haemophilus influenzae type B infection, pertussis, measles, mumps, rubella, varicella, human papillomaviruses for girls between 11 and 17 years of age.