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including hands-on report and interview with Dr Christine Böhmig and Gunther Müller, project managers of “Health care bridge training”

Individual support for full professional recognition

“Health care bridge training” brings international care workers into jobs near their residence

Starting position/challenge

Currently, there is a severe nationwide skill shortage in the fields of health care as well as patient and geriatric care. This also applies to hospitals and geriatric care facilities in Baden-Württemberg, which are in desperate need of qualified staff. At the same time, some 2,000 international nurses apply each year for recognition of their foreign degrees, which are often only partially acknowledged. In order to obtain professional licensing, requirements concerning professional, practice or language skills must be met. However, it is very difficult for many international nursing specialists to meet the requirements because there is a lack of knowledge of the German labour market, contacts and money. The “Health care bridge training” programme focuses on these difficulties. It is an example of the various projects and offers for health and nursing staff within Network IQ.

Implementation of the job training

The “vide terra” project provides coordinated support with the “Health care bridge training” project in the Network IQ Baden-Württemberg, both for international nursing specialists who are looking for qualified work as well as for hospitals that need trained staff. At the beginning of the project, the responsible parties convinced the hospital management to compensate the international nursing staff financially during their clinical internship. Through intensive coordination, the project quickly developed into a success story, not least because the job matching of participants and hospitals was individually supported by “vide terra”.

Contact with language course providers was also established to ensure that nursing specialists can reach the B2 level of German language proficiency before commencing their internships. Generally, the appropriate measure begins with an analysis of the training needs of the participant(s), based on which the modular training is planned. If it is required by the recognition assessment notice, language courses are carried out at the B2 qualification level, professional training courses are provided, and internships are completed in hospitals. Participants are supported close to where they live, as needed. For all participants there is an obligatory support group, which serves to clarify personal questions, teaches specific content and assists in overcoming cultural challenges.


Since the start of the project at the end of 2015, the “Health care bridge training” programme has so far successfully assisted 34 participants in their professional recognition and subsequently starting a qualified job. The qualification stands out through paid internships in the hospitals, the high level of support for the participants by the project management, the intensive cooperation of the participants, and the flexible, modular concept.

Addressees for transfer:

Counselling centres and personnel managers from the field of care services

Health care bridge training:

The “Health care bridge training” programme provides individually tailored continuing education for nurses who acquired their professional training abroad, but whose qualification has not been fully recognised in Germany. The course includes an analysis of the training needs of the participants as well as an individual planning of their educational steps to reach full recognition of the foreign degree.


Vide terra – recognition training for health care and nursing

Implementing organisation:

Social welfare organisation: Diakonische Werke Baden und Württemberg

Project management:

Dr Christine Böhmig (Karlsruhe / Pforzheim), Tel.: +49 (0)159 / 0400 2015, boehmig(at) 
Gunther Müller (Tübingen/ Reutlingen), Tel.: +49 (0)711 / 1656 217, mueller.g(at)