Bulgaria, Republic of
Prof Dr Nikolay Kirilov Petrov MD PHD DSC
Major General MC
3 St. Georgi Sofiiski Str.
Basic Task of the Military Medical Service
The main mission of the Bulgarian Military Medical Service is the medical support of the Army, Navy and Air Forces in all circumstances.
Medical services of Army, Navy and Air Forces are component parts of the Military Medical Academy (MMA), which is the successor to the General Garrison Hospital in Sofia, founded in 1891. The Military Medical Academy was established in 1989, at the Ministry of Defence of Republic of Bulgaria, as an integrated complex for medical care, education and scientific research with the commitment to develop the military
medical science, and to provide training, specialization and qualification of the military medical staff for the purpose of ensuring the fighting strength and combat readiness of the Bulgarian Armed Forces.
Specific missions of MMA are the prophylaxis, diagnostics, treatment, rehabilitation and military medical expertise of the Bulgarian Armed Forces and Ministry of Defence personnel including soldiers and their families, officers and civilians working in the military system. MMA provides health care also for the retired military officers, war veterans, members of the Parliament, officers of the Presidency and the Government of Republic of Bulgaria, dignitaries of the Diplomatic Corps, and civilians according to the contracts for medical care with National Insurance Fund. Military Medical Academy includes five military general hospitals in different regions of the country and three balneology centres for further treatment, rehabilitation and prophylaxis, where qualified staff takes care for patients’ health. The eight hospitals of MMA carried out about 68 000 hospitalizations and 300 000 outpatient consultations per year.
Since the 1st of October 2008 all troops’ medical units are part of the Military Medical Academy as a step to the full integration between Ministry of Defence and Defence Staff structures.
Military Medical Academy includes five military general hospitals in different regions of the country and three balneology centres for further treatment, rehabilitation and prophylaxis, where qualified staff takes care for patients’ health. Since the 1st of October 2008 all troops’ medical units are part of the Military Medical Academy as a step to the full integration between Ministry of Defence and Defence Staff structures.
Military Hospital for Active Treatment (780 beds) Sofia
Military Maritime Hospital for Active Treatment (280 beds) Varna
Military Hospital for Active Treatment (100 beds) Plovdiv
Military Hospital for Active Treatment (100 beds) Pleven
Military Hospital for Active Treatment (100 beds) Sliven
Hospital for Further Treatment, Rehabilitation and Prophylaxis – Bankya
Hospital for Further Treatment, Rehabilitation and Prophylaxis – Hissar
Hospital for Further Treatment, Rehabilitation and Prophylaxis – Pomorie
Military Hospital for Active Treatment (100 beds) – Sliven
- Centre of Military Medical Expertise and Aviation Medicine
- Centre for Mental Health and Prevention
- Research Institute of Radiobiology and NBC Protection
- Centre of Military Epidemiology and Hygiene
Number of Medical Service Personnel
Qualified physicians ..................................................1 058
Qualified dentists ............................................................59
Assisting/nursing personnel .......................................1 300
The multi-disciplinary hospital structures, the skilled teaching staff, the up-to-date equipment of the specialized and subspecialized clinical units correspond to the university hospital requirements of West-European type. This allows carrying out an adequate training of students, interns and residents from the Medical University and the Medical College.
Military Medical Academy is ready to provide Mobile Field Hospital (container type) with 40 beds (possible extension to 80), and 65 medical staff (possible extension to 125) that corresponds to NATO Role 2E or Role 3 depending on the needs of the mission. Each module is to be a mobile container with electricity, water reservoir and air conditioner. The basic modules are: admission and triage ward, ICU, operating theatre, postoperative care, x-ray, laboratory, blood transfusion, obstetrics and gynecology, dental care, sterilization and pharmacy. The rest of the mobile hospital is in tents with central air conditioner. For this type of hospital are needed 45 trucks coherent with the NATO trucks and its own logistic – electric generators, water supply system, kitchen, laundry, ambulances and warehouses. The proposed field hospital is autonomous up to 12 weeks and very suitable for log-lasting humanitarian missions and crisis situations, where it is of crucial importance to provide the patient with life-saving measures in the country and abroad.
Specific military units for emergency response
Military Medical Detachment for Emergency Response includes personnel of three of the military hospitals of MMA: Sofia, Plovdiv and Varna and provides qualified and partly specialized medical care in crisis situation. There are 6 aero medical teams comprising physicians and nurses which serve a Module for Aeromedical Evacuation established by MMA together with the Air-Force Base in Krumovo supported by 1 helicopter Kougar and 1 fixed wing aircraft Spartan.
In case of mass casualty situations MMA provides:
- Temporary centre for treatment of patients with acute radiation sickness;
- Temporary centre for treatment of intoxicated patients;
- Temporary centre for treatment of infectious diseases;
- Temporary trauma centre.
The Military Medical Academy is integrated in the national health care system providing emergency medical care to the civilians and medical support in crisis situations. The contracts with National Health Insurance Fund make accessible the specialized outpatient and in-patient health care to all insured Bulgarians. Thanks to its multi-disciplinary profile, MMA is one of the few medical establishments that signed contracts on almost all-existing clinical pathways.
Other Special Aspects
Two scientific societies related to the military medicine were established in 1995: Bulgarian Society of Military Medicine and Bulgarian Society of Aviation, Diving and Space Medicine, which are members of the International Committee of Military Medicine. Publication of a military medical journal began in 1905 under the name of Military Medical Matters and continues today with the journal Military Medicine, published by MMA.