The Medical University of Varna has signed a cooperation agreement with the University of Haifa, which envisions that third year Israeli medical university students will spend one year in Bulgaria and thus receive accreditation for their diplomas both in Israel and the European Union. Following the signing of this agreement, a group of Israelis are planning to study medicine at the Medical University of Varna. The Medical University of Varna is seeking cooperation with Hadassah, Shiba, Rambam, and other Israeli hospitals, for the Bulgarians are very much interested in the Israeli healthcare model.

Already, the Medical University of Varna has held joint workshops with Israeli hospitals on stem cell immunotherapy, as well as child emergency medicine. Israeli doctors are considered to be world class experts in the field of emergency medicine, to the point that many other countries, including some Arab ones like Jordan, have asked for Israelis to train them in the field of emergency medicine in the past. Due to Israel’s protracted political conflict, Israeli doctors have been forced to become experts on how to treat victims of conflict and to deal with other emergency like situations. Thus, Israeli doctors are considered world class in this field.

Israel enjoys good relations with Bulgaria. Aside from this latest collaboration effort, Israel routinely engages in joint projects with Bulgaria on genetics and in-vitro programs. Israeli Ambassador to Bulgaria, Shaul Kamissa Raz, proclaimed, “What happened in Bulgaria 70 years ago has no analogue in Europe. Today the Jews of Bulgarian origin are among the best Israeli musicians, military and medical professionals. These people are alive thanks to their Bulgarian rescuers.”

The Medical University of Varna is considered the third largest medical university within Bulgaria. The university aims to provide the people of Northern Bulgaria with adequate healthcare. Since the schools establishment, 8,351 Bulgarians and 977 international students have graduated from the Medical University of Varna.

By Rachel Avraham