Special languages

Medical German for international doctors

Passing the language exam is no guarantee that communication in the course of patient care will always run smoothly. Our language courses aim to counteract the risk of doctor/patient misunderstandings with serious consequences. The seminar modules aim to improve communication with respect to medical history discussions, patient briefings and discharge letters.    

Module 1 – The medical history discussion

1. Basics

  • Basic rules of communication
  • Medical history in different patient groups
  • Question types

2. Introduction

  • Structure, vocabulary
  • Initial contact between doctor and patient
  • Importance of medical history in the diagnostic process
  • Medical history form

3. Systematic approach

  • Medical history situation (emergency/planned admission)
  • Recent medical history, previous medical history, medication, history of the autonomic nervous system, injuries/damage, family history, social history, specialist medical history, documentation    

Module 2 – The patient briefing

1. Basic legal aspects

  • Obligation to brief patient
  • Aim of patient briefing
  • Documentation of patient briefing

2. Explanation of medical intervention

  • Relevant aspects such as reason for treatment, urgency, scope, typical risks, possible side effects, prognosis
  • Consequences of non-treatment
  • Alternative treatments
  • Foreseeable changes to the intervention

3. Content of patient briefing pharmacotherapy

  • Risks, side effects
  • Intolerances
  • Alternatives and scope of medication

4. The briefing

  • Time and procedure
  • Briefing techniques
  • Right of patient to revoke consent
  • Common errors

Module 3 – The discharge letter

1. Introduction

  • The discharge letter as a means of communication at the interface between outpatient and inpatient care
  • Ensuring continuity of treatment
  • Legal aspects and liability

2. Requirements

  • General requirements
  • Distinguishing between different types of discharge letter
  • differences between discharge letters in surgical and nonsurgical departments
  • electronic discharge letter
  • Aspects relevant to dictation

3. Contents and layout

  • Systematic structure of discharge letter, e.g. diagnosis codes,  main symptoms, medical history, clinical examination findings, discharge summary, references to checkups or therapeutic measures, discharge medication
  • Vocabulary
  • Help with phrasing
  • Relevant grammar

Organizational aspects

Tutorials, role-playing exercises, discussions, group work

Dates and venues:
For any further information, please contact our Cooperation Manager Ulrike Steinecke.