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Coronavirus: You can now get sick leave without visiting your GP

Coronavirus: You can now get sick leave without visiting your GP

Coronavirus: You can now get sick leave without visiting your GP

To an attempt to limit the spread of coronavirus, doctors in Germany are now allowed to grant sick leave to patients over the phone. This applies to both those suspected of having COVID-19 as well as patients displaying common cold symptoms. 

German doctors can grant sick leave over the phone

Instead of having to attend your doctor’s office - and risk infecting other individuals - you can now get signed off work by making a phone call to your doctor. This was announced on Monday by Germany’s national umbrella associations of physicians and health insurance companies

The new change has been introduced as the country struggles to cope with the twin demands of a worsening coronavirus outbreak and regular flu season. It is a temporary change, intended to reduce the workload for medical professionals, that should only stay in place for the next four weeks. 

Sick leave for both suspected coronavirus cases & common colds

Under the new system, a doctor can grant up to seven days of sick leave to patients who are suffering from mild respiratory problems - like the common cold. They can also grant sick leave to patients who are suspected of having coronavirus, according to official criteria set by the Robert Koch Institute. 

Suspicion of coronavirus infection will be deemed to be justified for people who show respiratory problems or general flu-like symptoms, who were in touch with confirmed coronavirus patients, or people with acute respiratory problems who spent time in a high-risk area. 

Patients in Germany are advised to call the 116 117 information hotline (not to be used for medical emergencies) if they believe they might have been infected. 

Abi

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Abi Carter

Abi studied History & German at the University of Manchester. She has since worked as a writer, editor and content marketeer, but still has a soft spot for museums, castles...

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