Bringing Up Toddlers in Bulgaria

Find out how to connect with other parents and where to find places for young children to play...

When a child is born in Bulgaria, it is common practice for an obstetrician to oversee the birth. The mother and newborn stay at the hospital or clinic for three to four days before returning home.

Toddler Health

The general practitioner or GP (??????????????? ?????) oversees the growth and general health of toddlers in Bulgaria. Parents are free to choose any general practitioner for their child and it is recommended to choose a doctor before the birth.

Parents can officially register their child at a doctor's practice approximately one month after the birth. To do this a registration form is required form (?????????????? ?????), which can be obtained from the local office of the National Health Insurance Fund - NHIF (??????? ??????????????????? ????) and a medical exchange file (??????? ?????) with information on the mother's pregnancy obtained from the gynaecologist. Parents are free to change doctors at any time.

Parents who have just moved to Bulgaria need to register with the Bulgarian national health service at their local municipality office, once they have received their residency permit (this must be applied for within 90 days of arrival in Bulgaria). They will need to present their passport and residency permit and they are issued with a social security number. It is necessary to pay up to 15 months national insurance in arrears in order to be accepted in the system, however, in the case of EU citizens, if they can provide form E104 from their home country this is not required. Once the social security number has been issued parents are able to register with the doctor of their choice.

Medical check-ups

After birth, the doctor visits the parents’ home for a thorough medical examination of the child within 24-hours of their return home, and again 14 to 20 days after the return. During the first year, medical check-ups take place each month. The doctor checks the child’s weight, height and physical and psychological development.

Children aged one to two have check-ups every three months and those aged two to seven undergo thorough medical examinations twice a year. These check-ups are free of charge.

The doctor fills in a medical record book for the child at each visit. The doctor and the mother each have their own records for the child’s growth, vaccinations and development – one that the mother keeps and carries with her every time she visits the doctor, and one that the doctor keeps as long as they are officially in charge of the child’s health.

Vaccinations

The newborn is vaccinated against hepatitis B (??????? B) and tuberculosis (???????????) by a specialist in the neonatology ward within 48 hours after the birth.

All other mandatory vaccinations and boosters are administered by the child’s doctor. During the first two years, the child is also vaccinated against:

  • Poliomyelitis (???????????)
  • Diphtheria (????????)
  • Tetanus (???????)
  • Whooping cough (??????)
  • Measles (???????)
  • Mumps/parotitis (???????)
  • Rubella (???????)

It is the responsibility of the doctor to inform parents of the type and date for each vaccination. All vaccinations are free of charge.

  • For a list of all mandatory vaccinations and the age at which they are administered: Click here (in Bulgarian)
  • For a list of doctors in Bulgaria and their contact details: Click here (in Bulgarian)