Bulgaria

In 1963 the Centre of Gerontology and Geriatric Medicine (CGG) was established at the Bulgarian Ministry of Health and Social Care. In 1972 the CGG lost its independent status and was merged in the Institute of Endocrinology within the Medical Academy (now Medical University of Sofia). In 1970 the Scientific Medical Society of Gerontology and Geriatric Medicine (SMSGT) was founded and continued work up to 1996 when some of its members established a new association, The Bulgarian Association on Ageing (BAA). In 1997 BAA became an organization-member of the IAGG-ER. BAA is a non-profit association of a wide circle of professionals in the field of gerontology, geriatric medicine, as well as of voluntary workers and public figures.

The progress of geriatric medicine in Bulgaria has been uneven. Since 1969 in the former CGG began regular annual post-graduate courses of education in gerontology and geriatric medicine for physicians and other health professionals. Later the Institute of Endocrinology gradually assimilated the CGG, and the Section of Gerontology and Geriatric Medicine was definitely abolished in 2002.

In Bulgaria there is still a regrettable lack of structures in geriatric medicine except for a few psycogeriatric beds. There are no chairs, nor undergraduate education in gerontology and/or geriatric medicine.  In 2004 the Sofia Faculty of Medicine finally included optional courses in gerontology and geriatric medicine in its curricula for medical students. A subspecialty of gerontology and geriatric medicine (two years of education after a primary speciality of internal medicine, general medicine, neurology or psychiatry) was established in 1991 and later it was removed. It was then proposed to create a subspecialty of geriatric medicine within internal medicine but the idea was never put into practice.

Organization

BAA has over 50 members, the majority of whom are medical doctors, but also social workers, psychologists, economists, nurses and other professionals working with older people.

Scientific Meetings

BAA held a national Workshop on the rehabilitation and social care for older people and took part in other workshops on problems of carers. It carries out 3 or 4 meetings every year.