Counselling

Advice – what is that?
Healthy – but you still visit the doctor?

We want to give you a first insight into Germany's health and social sector and present our free and independent pregnancy counselling service.

If you are in need or are looking for advice, then you can make use of our many counselling and support services. This is standard in Germany and is widely accepted.

1. Pregnancy:

Every woman and every man has a right to counselling when it comes to sexuality, family planning and during pregnancy. (Section 2 (1) of the Act on Pregnancies in Conflict Situations).

The Basic Law of the Federal Republic of Germany also states: "Every mother shall be entitled to the protection and care of the community." All pregnant women are entitled to comprehensive medical examinations (every 4 weeks, and every two weeks in the last two months) by a doctor or midwife. You yourself can choose your doctor (male/female)/midwife, antenatal classes as well as the maternity hospital. You will receive your maternity book and at least three ultrasound scans.

You can use our counselling service for family planning, during pregnancy, and up until your child reaches the age of three. We can advise you on social benefits, regarding financial difficulties, health matters, relationship conflicts, looking for a home, midwife support, leisure activities for families, baby's first needs, early support, dealing with public authorities ..... and we can also show you where to find the advice services you need.

After your baby is born, you will receive the baby's birth certificate at the citizens' registration office, your midwife will be there to help you and medical check-ups will be available for your baby. You will need to provide the Office for Housing and Migration, your social services and the Federal Office for Migration and Refuges with copies of the birth certificate.

2. Pregnancies in conflict situations:

Sometimes pregnancy can occur at a very inconvenient time. Do you feel disheartened and exhausted, you have no support, are concerned and worried about the future?

We will take the time to talk to you and provide you with completely confidential, unbiased advice regarding your situation in life. At the same time, together with you we will search for prospects for a life with your child and we will offer you a wide range of support services.

If you are considering termination in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, you are required by law to go to a state-recognised pregnancy counselling office. Your visit to the pregnancy counselling office must be three days before the day of termination. After counselling, you will be provided with the required counselling certificate. Termination of pregnancy can be carried out with medication or surgery and must be performed by a medical doctor. If you feel the need for further counselling after termination, your counsellor will be pleased to talk to you.

3. Antenatal medical examinations:

During pregnancy, you will be offered antenatal medical examinations (antenatal diagnostic testing) by a gynaecologist so that any conditions or problems with your baby's development can be detected. These tests can help to ease your mind, but they can be difficult on you. We can advise you on whether or not you should choose to have this antenatal testing (costs!).

If any problems are detected with your baby, we can provide you with extensive support in order to prepare you for the birth of your sick child. If you decide to terminate the pregnancy, we will help you to come to terms with this difficult decision.

4. Inability to have children:

If you have applied for asylum in Germany, you will not have full health insurance at the beginning.

You will receive treatment if you have an acute condition. Children, pregnant women, victims of violence and people with disabilities are given additional, special protection.

If you are unable to have children, this means that you yourself will have to bear in full the high costs of reproductive medical treatment. While waiting to be included in the regular health insurance scheme, however, you can also make use of (low-cost) diagnostic testing, e.g. cycle observation, ultrasound and hormone tests, sperm analysis, etc. It should be noted that just like the woman the man should also be examined because men are just as often infertile as women. Our counselling service can provide you with information about fertility, how the body works, the prospects and risks of treatment and we can help you during this time through talks in order to help you to comes to terms with grief, anger, jealousy, guilt, family pressure, relationship conflicts, future prospects and alternatives.

5. Violence:

In Germany, women and men have equal rights. Any kind of physical or psychological violence against women, men and children, even in marriage and the family, is forbidden and will be punished. Please do not hesitate to contact our counselling service, we can show you where to find protection and help. In acute cases of emergency, you can call the anonymous, multilingual hotline support service: 08000 116016.

6. Confidential birth:

If you do not know where to turn, if you want to keep your pregnancy a secret, or in your current plight you are considering having the baby on your own, please contact our confidential birth counselling service.

You can have your baby with medical support without having to disclose your identity. We will advise and support you both before and after the birth. You will receive all the help you need. Your rights and those of your child are protected. If your situation currently seems hopeless, a confidential birth will give you sufficient time to decide later (in the first months until conclusion of the adoption procedure) if you wish to raise your child by yourself. If you do not feel capable of living with your child, you child will grow up with loving adoptive parents. You are not alone! We will support and assist you! (Multilingual support hotline: 0800 4040020).

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