A working visit of an international partner business delegation from the German-Bulgarian Chamber of Industry and Commerce - Berlin, the European SPA Association (ESPA) and the Bulgarian Union of Balneology and SPA Tourism (BUBSPA) was held on 27th July 2020 at MU-Varna. The focus of the meeting was cooperation, future initiatives and projects for the development of Health Tourism in Bulgaria. Ms. Carmen Struck - Deputy CEO of the German-Bulgarian Chamber of Industry and Commerce - Berlin, Mr. Christian Struck - rehabilitation expert, Berlin, Dr. A. Mueller - Health Tourism expert, psychologist consultant - London and Ms. Siyka Katsarova - President of the Bulgarian Union of Balneology and SPA Tourism (BUBSPA) and Vice President of the European SPA Association took part in the discussion.
Medical University - Varna was represented by Prof. Todorka Kostadinova - Director, International Cooperation, Accreditation and Quality Directorate, Assoc. Prof. Gergana Nenova - Department of Physiotherapy, Rehabilitation, Seawater Therapy and Occupational Diseases, TS Kinesitherapy, Assoc. Prof. Antoaneta Tsvetkova - Director of Medical College - Varna, Ch. Assist. Prof. Nikolay Nedev - Deputy Director of Medical College - Varna, as well as the team of the Department of International Cooperation.
The working visit agenda included a visit to the Clinic of Physical Medicine and Physiotherapy at University Hospital "St. Marina" - Varna at Estreya Palace Hotel. Dr. Bacheva and Albena Yordanova presented to the experts the activities, goals and infrastructure of the SPA Centre. Prof. T. Kostadinova acquainted the guests with the University, highlighting the training opportunities for specialists in the fields of Medicine, Rehabilitation, Kinesitherapy, Nursing Care, Health Management, etc.
The meeting also discussed opportunities for joint activities and partnership between science and business for more successful implementation of the processes of receiving German tourists through payment by the German health insurance funds, visits of specialists from Germany as practice trainers and guest lecturers, as well as conducting joint research and introducing new training techniques.
MU-Varna sustainably continues the partnership with the Bulgarian Union of Balneology and SPA Tourism and the Ministry of Tourism for introducing changes in SPA tourism. The University is ready to get involved in the development of a single standard for service, treatment and management in the SPA sector.
MU-Varna has received an official invitation to the Annual Congress of BUBSPA, which is to be held in September 2020.
The participants at the meeting agreed on the key importance of communications and marketing, as well as on the need for rebranding Bulgaria as a destination for Health and Medical Tourism.