REPUBLIC OF BULGARIA
NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

PEOPLE'S HEALTH ACT

Promulgated State Gazette No. 88/06.11.1973

Amended SG No. 92/1973; 63/1976; 28/1983; 66/1985; 27/1986; 89/1988;
87 & 99/1989; 15 & 24/1991; 64/1993; 31/1994 & 36/1995

Chapter One

GENERAL PROVISIONS

Article 1

This Act shall govern social relationships relevant to protection of the health of the population and it is aimed at providing favorable conditions for harmonious physical and spiritual development and long active life of the citizens, as well as to improve the reproduction of the population.

Article 2

(Amended - SG, No. 15/1991 and No. 64/1993)

(1) All Bulgarian citizens shall be entitled to free medical service by the state medical establishments under the provisions of this Act.

(2) The state shall take thorough care for protection and recovery of the health of citizens, and shall provide free generally accessible and qualified medical service by developing the necessary network of state medical authorities and establishments.

(3) State medical authorities and establishments shall be instituted with the Ministry of Health, the higher education medical schools, the People's Councils, the Ministry of Transport, the Ministry of National Defence, the Ministry of Interior and the General Directorate of Engineering Forces.

(4) The hospital facilities needed for the training process and research work of higher medical schools shall be placed at their disposal for use and management.

(5) Further to the state establishments, medical service shall be rendered in medical establishments of citizens and legal persons, as well as in offices of private medical specialists.

Article 3

(Amended - SG, No. 15/1991)

(1) The activities related to protection and recovery of the health of the population shall be managed, coordinated and controlled by the Ministry of Health.

(2) The medical authorities and establishments of the People's Councils shall be managed also by the Ministry of Health.

(3) Higher Medical Board shall be instituted with the Ministry of Health, which shall comprise representatives of the Ministry of Health, of professional-trade organizations and of higher medical establishments. The Council of Ministers shall determine the members of the board and shall issue its Rules of Procedure.

(4) The Ministry of Health shall carry out methodological guidance in respect of medical authorities and establishments of the Ministry of National Defence, the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Transport and the General Directorate of Engineering Forces.

Article 4

The People's Councils shall manage their subordinate medical authorities and establishments and shall take measures for the proper development of the medical network and the improvement of its materials and equipment base. They shall take care to improve the medical service of the population on their territories.

Article 5

(1) The activities of medical authorities for protection and recovery of the health of the population shall be based on prophylactics aimed at providing and maintaining the necessary conditions for prevention of diseases, and for recovery and improvement of the health of citizens.

(2) The medical authorities and establishments shall carry out their tasks with the cooperation of public organizations, labour collectives and the citizens.

Article 6

(1) The Ministry of Health shall manage the health education and health training of the population.

(2) The health education and health training shall be disseminated with the cooperation of all government authorities and public organizations.

Article 7

(Amended - SG, No. 63/1976 and No. 15/1991)

(1) The Ministry of Health together with the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare and with the central authorities of the trade-union organizations shall develop the major principles and criteria for determination of the ability of citizens to work.

(2) The Ministry of Health shall organize and manage the expert examination for the ability of citizens to work.

Article 8

The Ministry of Health shall maintain relations with similar ministries and departments in other countries, and with international medical organizations, and shall conduct the state policies in the field of international health cooperation.

Chapter Two

PROVISION OF FAVORABLE LIVING ENVIRONMENT
FOR THE POPULATION

Article 9

(1) The ministries and other departments, the People's Councils and other government authorities, the business and public organizations, shall carry out sanitary-hygiene and anti-epidemic activities to protect the environment from pollution, to provide hygienic conditions for labour, life and leisure of the population, and to prevent diseases.

(2) Within the sphere of their activities, they shall provide the best sanitary-hygiene conditions for education, training and leisure of children and students in all education-training establishments and boarding schools.

(3) The curricula for primary and secondary education establishments shall be coordinated with the Ministry of Health, in order to take in consideration the age and physiological characteristics and abilities of the students and the hygiene requirements to the training-education process.

Article 10

The Ministry of Health and its authorities shall study in advance the effect of new production and technological processes on the health and the ability of the people to work, and shall propose measures to prevent harmful consequences.

Article 11

The state authorities and business organizations shall, in coordination with the respective trade-union and medical authorities, prepare long-term and annual programs for comprehensive prophylactic activities and shall provide the funds needed for the implementation thereof.

Article 12

The People's Councils shall take care and shall be responsible for the cleanliness and the good sanitary-hygienic state of the settlements.

Article 13

The government authorities, the business and public organizations shall take all necessary measures to prevent and reduce the noise intensity within the limits of hygiene norms.

Article 14

The Ministry of Health shall approve norms and regimes for rational nutrition at public catering establishments and shall promote rational nutrition among the population.

Article 15

(Amended - SG, No. 15/1991)

The Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industry and the Ministry of Environment shall control the import, manufacture, use, storage and transportation of poisonous and highly active substances.

Article 16

(1) The government authorities, the business and public organizations shall assist the medical authorities in preventing the import, occurrence, spreading, and in the liquidation of contagious and parasitic diseases among the population.

(2) In the case of occurrence of single cases of especially dangerous infections or in the case of epidemic spreading of contagious diseases the Council of Ministers, the Ministry of Health and the Executive Committees of Municipal People's Councils may introduce special conditions for work, training and transit of the population and other restrictive measures for prevention and liquidation of diseases pursuant to the procedure specified in the Rules for application of the Act.

Article 17

(1) For protection of this country from the import and spreading of especially dangerous contagious diseases border sanitary control shall be organized over citizens, transport vehicles and goods that cross the border.

(2) The tasks and the organization of the border sanitary control shall be set forth by Regulation approved by the Council of Ministers.

Article 18

(1) Compulsory immunizations shall be made for protection of the population from contagious diseases.

(2) The types of immunizations and the terms for their implementation shall be determined by the Ministry of Health.

Chapter Three

STATE SANITARY CONTROL

Article 19

(1) The Ministry of Health shall exercise state sanitary control through specialized bodies specified in the Rules for application of the Act.

(2) The Minister of Health shall set forth compulsory hygiene norms, requirements and sanitary rules related to all aspects of hygiene, radiation safety and epidemiology.

Article 20

The Ministry of Health shall set forth compulsory hygiene norms, requirements and sanitary rules related to all aspects of hygiene, radiation safety and epidemiology.

Article 21

(Amended - SG, No. 36/1995)

The bodies of the state sanitary control shall:

1) issue rulings on compliance of all state standards, working standards, construction, technical and other rules and norms, projects for territorial and settlement development and for construction, expansion and reconstruction of production, public, utility and other projects and facilities, with the sanitary norms and requirements and with the sanitary rules;

2) permit the use of new chemical and biological substances, products, stimulants, means and methods for production in the industry, the agriculture, the transport and other sectors; the introduction of new technological processes, equipment, devices and work tools, in view of avoiding harmful effects on human health;

3) stop the construction, prohibit the commissioning and stop the operation of plants and facilities that are in violation of hygiene norms and requirements and of the sanitary rules, should there exist danger of harmful effect on human health, whereas they shall notify forthwith the management of the respective superior organization;

4) prohibit the transfer, transportation and use of foods, chemical products and other materials and objects, harmful and hazardous to human health, and shall order their destruction, reprocessing or use for other purposes;

5) prohibit the use of production technologies and stimulants in stock-breeding and plant-growing that may have harmful effect on human health;

6) remove from collectives, admit to hospitals as required or isolate patients with contagious diseases, infectors and carriers of parasites, that are hazardous to the health of those around, whereas they shall set under quarantine or medical control persons in contact with patients with contagious diseases.

Article 22

The bodies of the state sanitary control shall have the power:

1) to visit at any time projects subject to control, and to request from officials and citizens information and documents as needed to ascertain the sanitary and epidemiologic state;

2) to take food products, substances, objects and materials for laboratory analysis or chemical expert examination; to assign, where necessary, the conducting of expert examination to research departments and laboratories, regardless of their subordination;

3) to specify groups of the population, subject to compulsory prophylactic immunizations;

4) to carry out compulsory desinfection of objects used by patients with contagious diseases or infectors, which may present a danger of spreading contagious diseases, as well as the premises and the environment;

5) to issue compulsory instructions for application of the necessary sanitary and anti-epidemic measures.

Article 23

The bodies of the Ministry of Interior and the managers of departments and business organizations shall be obliged to render the necessary assistance and cooperation to the sanitary bodies in exercising the state sanitary control.

Article 24

The Minister of National Defence, the Minister of Interior, the Minister of Transport and the Head of the General Directorate of Engineering Forces shall, in coordination with the Minister of Health, determine the procedure and means for exercising sanitary control in their subordinate detachments, business organizations and services.

Chapter Four

MEDICAL SERVICE

Article 25

(Amended - SG, No. 15/1991)

Medical service of the population shall be rendered in infirmaries, polyclinics, hospitals, hydropathic sanatoriums, dispensaries, at the homes of patients and other medical establishments.

Article 25a

(Articles 25a - 25f - new, SG, No. 15/1991)

(1) Entitled to private medical practice shall be the qualified medical specialists.

(2) Prohibited from private medical practice shall be medical specialists who exercise state sanitary control.

(3) Persons under paragraph (1) shall register with the municipal people's council on the territory of which they have instituted their private practice (office), upon submission of:

1. Document for qualifications and certificate of length of service, if required;

2. Ruling from the bodies of the State Sanitary Control;

3. Conviction Record Certificate.

(4) The Minister of Health shall issue Regulation on the procedure and terms for private practice.

Article 25b

(1) Entitled to institute private medical establishments shall be citizens and legal persons.

(2) Medical activities in private medical establishments shall be managed by qualified doctors of medicine or stomatologists with recognized specialization.

(3) The Bulgarian Orthodox Church, other churches and religious communities, charity and other non-profit associations, as well as legal persons, shall be entitled to institute medical establishments. The medical service therein shall be managed by a doctor of medicine (stomatologist) who meets the requirements under paragraph (2).

(4) Medical activities in private and cooperative medical establishments shall be carried out in compliance with the provisions of this Act.

Article 25c

(1) Permission to institute private medical establishment shall be issued by the Minister of Health after approval by the Higher Medical Board, on the grounds of:

1. Application including the full name and the profile of the medical establishment;

2. Opinion of the Municipal People's Council (Mayoralty);

3. Ruling of the bodies of the State Sanitary Control;

4. Rules for the structure, activities and order in the medical establishment;

5. Record of Conviction Certificate.

(2) The rejection from the Minister of Health to issue permission pursuant to paragraph (1) shall be subject to appeal pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act.

(3) The institution of cooperative medical establishment shall be pursuant to the Cooperative Organizations Act, and also in compliance with the provisions of this Act.

Article 25d

(1) The closure of private or cooperative medical establishment shall be by order of the Minister of Health upon proposal from the Higher Medical Board, should it be ascertained that the terms under which permission to institute the establishment have not been complied to, or that the mode of its operation provides no guarantees for correct treatment and service of patients. In such cases the opinion of the respective local professional-trade organizations shall be taken in consideration.

(2) The order under paragraph (1) shall be subject to appeal pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act, whereas the appeal shall not stop the execution of the order.

Article 25e

Private and cooperative medical establishments and medical specialists with private practice (office) shall render medical service at prices determined pursuant to the Price Formation Rules, which shall be proposed by the professional-trade organizations and approved by the Minister of Health.

Article 25f

Medical specialists with private medical practice, or such who work at private, cooperative or other medical establishments, shall issue medical documents as determined by the Minister of Health and the Minister of Labour and Social Welfare.

Article 26

(Amended - SG, No. 15/1991)

(1) All Bulgarian citizens shall be entitled to free medical service by the respective state medical establishment.

(2) Any Bulgarian citizen with permanent residence abroad, shall be entitled to free medical service in Bulgaria only provided he/she has been residing in this country for a continuous period of more than six months.

(3) All medical staff shall be obliged to render timely and qualified medical service to patients. Examinations and treatment shall be carried out with the consent of the patient, except for cases as provided by this Act.

Article 27

(1) Foreign nationals and persons without citizenship who have been granted permanent residence in the People's Republic of Bulgaria, shall be entitled to medical service on equal grounds with Bulgarian citizens.

(2) The medical service for foreign nationals and persons without citizenship who don't have permission for permanent residence in this country shall be governed by the Rules for application of this Act, unless otherwise provided by international agreements to which the People's Republic of Bulgaria is a party.

Article 28

(1) First aid service shall be rendered to all persons regardless of their citizenship.

(2) Persons who have been injured in accidents or who have suddenly fallen ill, shall be rendered medical service by the nearest medical establishment or person with medical qualification.

Article 29

(1) The departments and business organizations and officials shall be obliged to cooperate with the medical staff in rendering first aid to citizens.

(2) In cases where the life of a patient is in danger, the medical staff shall be entitled to use free of charge any available transport vehicle to get to the location of the patient, as well as for the transportation of the patient to the nearest medical establishment.

Article 30

(1) (Amended - SG, No. 15/1991) For the purposes of protection of the health and the ability to work of the population the state medical establishments shall carry out prophylactic examinations, tests, and dispensary control.

(2) Prophylactic examinations and tests shall be compulsory for the citizens.

(3) The executive committees of municipal people's councils and the managers of departments and business organizations shall cooperate with medical authorities for the attendance of prophylactic examinations by the persons specified.

Article 31

(Amended - SG, No. 36/1995)

(1) The medical staff shall be obliged to explain in an appropriate manner to the patients or to their relatives the nature of the disease and the purpose of the treatment carried out.

(2) In rendering medical service methods and means shall be applied, which have been recognized by medical science and practice.

(3) Methods for prophylactics, diagnostics and treatment, that have not been yet generally recognized, may be applied only in the interest of the patient under procedure determined by the Ministry of Health.

(4) Methods for diagnostics and treatment that cause temporary change in human consciousness, such as hypnosis and sedation, may be applied only in properly equipped medical establishments by specially trained persons.

(5) For the application of methods under paragraphs (3) and (4) the preliminary consent shall be required of the persons to who such methods are to be applied, and should they be incapacitated - the consent of their legal representatives or guardians.

Article 32

Surgical operations and complex diagnostic methods shall be carried out with the consent of patients, and should they be incapacitated - with the consent of their legal representatives or guardians. Without such consent doctors of medicine may carry out surgical operations and apply complex diagnostic methods where it is not possible to obtain it in due time, and should the failure to carry out the above endanger the life of the patient.

Article 33

For the purposes of saving human life or in the case of serious threat to health, organs and tissues may be taken from corpses or healthy persons, which may be transplanted to the patient. The decision about the need for such transplantation shall be taken by special commission of doctors of medicine - specialists. The consent of the patient shall also be required for the transplantation, and should the patient be incapacitated - the consent of the legal representative or guardian thereof.

Article 34

(1) (Amended - SG, No. 66/1985) Organs and tissues for transplantation shall be taken from deceased persons who are in a state of cerebral death, ascertained by at least three doctors of medicine, whereas two of them may not be members of the transplantation team.

(2) For taking viscera and tissues from corpses available at medical establishments, the consent of the relatives of the deceased shall not be required.

(3) Should the corpse be subject to forensic expert examination, organs and tissues shall be taken therefrom in the presence of forensic expert.

(4) (New - SG, No. 15/1991) Under the procedure of the preceding paragraphs organs and tissues may be taken also for other therapeutic purposes, as well as for research and training purposes of public health.

Article 35

(1) Organs and tissues from living humans may be taken only in establishments specified by the Ministry of Health, provided this shall not expose the life of such persons to danger, and provided their consent has been obtained in writing, after the risks undertaken have been explained to such persons in simple language.

(2) Only one of the paired organs of living humans may be taken for transplantation, provided the following conditions have been complied to:

1) the person from who the organ is to be taken, should be in good physical and mental health. This should be ascertained by at least three doctors of medicine, whereas one of them should be psychiatrist and two of them may not be members of the transplantation team;

2) it should be ascertained in advance whether the organ to be taken and the remaining organ have fully preserved functions;

3) the necessary tests should be made in advance and biological compatibility should be ascertained between the patient and the person from who the organ is to be taken.

Article 36

(Amended - SG, No. 15/1991)

(1) Patients with venereal diseases, lepra and other contagious diseases, specified in the Rules for application of the Act, shall be subject to compulsory treatment in state medical establishment.

(2) Admission of patients to state medical establishments for compulsory treatment under the preceding paragraph shall be by order of the head physician of the respective medical establishment.

(3) Subject to compulsory treatment in state medical establishments shall be also patients with mental diseases, specified in the Rules for application of the Act, after certification by commission of specialists.

(4) Admission to medical establishment for compulsory treatment of mental diseases under the preceding paragraph shall be by ruling of the district court of justice pursuant to Article 59, paragraph (2), Article 61, Article 62, Article 63, paragraphs (1), (3) and (4) and Article 64, paragraph (1) of this Act. Where the state of the patient does not allow appearance in judicial establishment, the court shall hear the patient in the medical establishment.

(5) Where the state of the mentally ill patient demands immediate measures to be taken, the head physician may rule that such patient be admitted temporarily to the state medical establishment for treatment, whereas he shall notify forthwith the district attorney thereof, who shall approach the court for issue of ruling under the preceding paragraph.

(6) The compulsory treatment in medical establishment shall be terminated when it is not necessary any more. In all cases, should the treatment continue, after each following year the court shall consider the issue of its termination or continuation.

Article 36a

(New - SG, No. 89/1988; amended, No. 15/1991)

(1) Subject to compulsory tests in state medical establishment for ascertainment of the acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) under terms and procedure determined by the Minister of Health, shall be:

1. Bulgarian citizens;

2. foreign nationals and persons without citizenship, resident in the Republic of Bulgaria.

(2) Patients with AIDS shall be subject to compulsory treatment in state medical establishment, inclusive of admission to hospital establishment, under terms and procedure specified in the Rules for application of this Act.

(3) Persons infected with the AIDS virus, shall be subject to compulsory tests in state medical establishment under terms, procedure and for a period of time specified in the Rules for application of the Act.

(4) The compulsory tests and the admission to state hospital establishment for compulsory treatment under paragraphs (2) and (3) shall be carried out by order of the head physician of the respective medical establishment.

Article 37

(1) Corpses of persons who have died in medical establishments shall be subject to pathoanatomic autopsy. Exceptions shall be allowed only by permission of the manager of the medical establishment.

(2) Pathoanatomic autopsy on corpses of persons who have died outside medical establishments may be done upon request of the physician who has ascertained the death.

(3) Pathoanatomic autopsy under the preceding paragraphs shall not be done where the corpse is subject to forensic expert examination.

Article 38

For carrying out labour treatment in some medical establishments shall be organized auxiliary farms, labour treatment workshops and courses for vocational training and retraining.

Article 39

The business organizations shall provide the necessary material conditions - premises, furniture, etc., of organized thereto medical establishments and services.

Article 40

Medical establishments shall provide free of charge social-legal assistance to pregnant women, mothers of young children, minors and patients with mental diseases and drug addiction.

Article 41

(Repealed - SG, No. 31/1994)

Chapter Five

PROTECTION OF THE HEALTH OF PREGNANT WOMEN,
MOTHERS AND CHILDREN

Article 42

(1) Maternity in the People's Republic of Bulgaria is encouraged by the state. Women-mothers are entitled to special protection and care by the state, the business and public organizations.

(2) The medical authorities and establishments, as well as departments, public and business organizations shall take care to improve the birth-rate and reproduction of the population.

Article 43

The medical establishments shall organize special dispensary control of pregnant women, hospital medical service for delivery and therapeutic-prophylactic care for mothers and children.

Article 44

The People's Councils and business organizations shall, within the framework of the unified plan for socio-economic development of this country and the plans of business organizations, provide funds for expansion of the network of children's medical-pedagogical establishments - nurseries, kindergartens, recuperative schools, summer camps, and of baby kitchens, as well as funds for their maintenance.

Article 45

The medical authorities together with the people's education authorities shall take special care for protection and improvement of the health of children in children's establishments and of the students.

Chapter Six

SANATORIAL-RESORT TREATMENT

Article 46

(1) The Ministry of Health shall, with the cooperation of the People's Councils, plan, organize and manage the exploration, survey and protection of resort resources.

(2) Localities or settlements with natural factors which have favorable effect on the human organism and may be used for therapeutic and prophylactic purposes, shall be declared resorts. Resorts of local importance shall be declared by the Minister of Health, and resorts of national and international importance - by the Council of Ministers.

Article 47

The Minister of Health shall approve the sanitary-protected areas, where prohibited or restricted shall be construction or other activities which may have adverse affect on the resort.

Article 48

The construction and institution of sanatorial-resort establishments, rest houses and water-pumping enterprises, shall be subject to mandatory approval by the Ministry of Health, which shall also determine both the maximum capacity and the nature of sanatorial-resort establishments.

Article 49

(Amended - SG, No. 89/1988; No. 15/1991)

(1) The Ministry of Health shall approve the operation reserves of mineral waters and therapeutic mud deposits, and shall exercise full control over their management.

(2) The regime of use of mineral waters and therapeutic mud deposits of national importance shall be determined by the Ministry of Health.

(3) The mineral waters of national importance and the therapeutic mud deposits shall be determined by the Council of Ministers upon proposal from the Minister of Health.

(4) The regime of use of mineral waters other than those under paragraph (3), shall be determined by the Municipal People's Councils.

Article 50

The Ministry of Health shall manage the sanatorial-resort treatment. It shall specify the medical indications and the procedure for admission to sanatorial-resort treatment in the various hydropathic sanatorial establishments.

Chapter Seven

MEDICAL SUPERVISION OVER PHYSICAL CULTURE,
SPORTS AND TOURISM

Article 51

(1) The Ministry of Health shall exercise medical supervision over the physical culture, sports and tourism.

(2) The Ministry of Health shall approve medical norms and rules for the physical education, the education-training and the physical culture and recuperation work of students, of athletes and sportsmen.

Article 52

The People's Councils and other departments, the business and public organizations shall provide in the course of planning and shall build appropriate physical culture and sport projects and facilities in settlements, within the housing complexes, at children's and education establishments, plants, enterprises, cooperative farms, etc.

Article 53

(1) Persons included in sport activities and persons involved in active sports shall be subject to compulsory initial, periodic and pre-competition examinations, without which they shall not be admitted to training activities and competitions.

(2) Sport and mass physical culture and tourist events shall not be allowed if the organizers have failed to provide medical service.

(3) Prohibited shall be the use of stimulant drugs for the purpose of artificially improving sport results.

(4) Sport, physical culture and tourist events, for which medical service has not been provided, shall be stopped, and competitors who have not been subjected to the compulsory medical examinations or who have used stimulant drugs, shall be dismissed from participation in the training activity or the competition, respectively.

Chapter Eight

STRUGGLE AGAINST ALCOHOLISM,
DRUG ADDICTION AND TOBACCO SMOKING

Article 54

(1) The state authorities in cooperation with the public organizations shall be obliged within the sphere of their activities to take part in the struggle against drunkenness and alcoholism, drug addiction and tobacco smoking, and to educate in temperance the young generation and all working people.

(2) The Ministry of Health and its bodies shall take active part in the struggle against alcoholism, tobacco smoking and other drug addictions by means of therapeutic-prophylactic measures and health education.

Article 55

The advertisement and propaganda of whatever useful characteristics of alcoholic beverages and tobacco products shall be prohibited.

Article 56

Prohibited shall be the sale of alcoholic beverages:

1) (Amended - SG, No. 28/1983) to minors and persons under age, and to persons in drunken state;

2) at manufacturing enterprises, pedagogical and cultural establishments, hostels, tourist chalets and snack bars, as well as in confectioneries and other retail outlets and places, determined by order of the Minister of Economy and Planning in coordination with the Minister of Interior;

3) at parties of young people, sport events and the like.

Article 57

Prohibited shall be the admission to public houses of persons who have been declared chronic alcoholics on lists, approved by the executive committees of the Municipal People's Councils by proposal of the medical authorities and the bodies of the Ministry of Interior.

Article 58

(1) Smoking shall be prohibited in work premises where some of the employees are non-smokers, unless the latter have given their consent for that in writing.

(2) Smoking shall be prohibited in work premises where work pregnant women or breast-feeding mothers, regardless of their consent.

(3) Prohibited shall be the sale of tobacco products to minors and persons under age.

Article 59

(1) Persons afflicted with alcoholic or other addiction disease, who refuse to be treated or avoid voluntary treatment, inflict serious damage to their health due to use of alcohol or other intoxicating substances, upset their families by their behavior or disrupt the public order and the rules of socialist society, shall be subject to compulsory treatment.

(2) The admission to compulsory treatment shall be done by order of the district court upon proposal from the district attorney.

Article 60

Signals to the prosecuting attorney for compulsory treatment may be submitted by public organizations, committees for temperance, voluntary squads, Municipal People's Councils, the bodies of the Ministry of Interior, medical establishments and other government bodies, as well as citizens.

Article 61

(1) The district attorney shall make proposals on the grounds of inspection and medical expert examination.

(2) The court shall send transcript of the proposal to the person, whose compulsory treatment is required. Such person may file objections within seven days and submit evidence.

Article 62

(1) Within two weeks following the submission of the proposal the court shall consider the case in public court proceedings with the participation of the prosecuting attorney and the person, whose compulsory treatment is required. Such person shall be entitled to defence.

(2) Should the person for no good reason fail to appear voluntarily for medical certification or fail to attend the court proceedings, such person shall be brought by force.

Article 63

(1) The court shall issue a ruling on the proposal of the prosecuting attorney, after hearing the person, taking decision on the grounds of the evidence collected.

(2) Should the court find the proposal of the prosecuting attorney to be justified, it shall determine the specialized medical establishment and the term of compulsory treatment. The term may not exceed one year.

(3) The ruling of the court shall be subject to appeal before the regional court within seven days following its notification. In the course of proceedings before the district and the regional courts the provisions of the Penal and Procedure Code shall be applied, unless special rules are provided in this Chapter.

(4) A decision which has entered into force shall be executed by the medical authorities, whereas if necessary they shall be assisted by the bodies of the Ministry of Interior.

Article 64

(1) Upon proposal from the district attorney, based on medical expert examination, the court may terminate the compulsory treatment in a public meeting of the court.

(2) Where to the expiry of the term determined by the court the person has not been healed, the court may, upon proposal from the district attorney and on the grounds of conclusions from the medical expert examination, rule in compliance with the preceding Article a new decision for compulsory treatment.

Article 65

(1) The compulsory treatment shall be carried out in specialized medical establishments, organized by the Ministry of Health in cooperation with the People's Councils.

(2) The compulsory treatment shall be combined with labour therapy in workshops and farms, set up for that purpose with the specialized medical establishments, where patients are treated. For the work done the patients shall receive remuneration according to the amount of labour put in.

Article 66

Amounts shall be withheld from the remuneration under paragraph (2) of the preceding Article for partial coverage of expenses related to the support of the person admitted to the medical establishment, and the remaining amount shall be paid to the persons to who such person is bound to pay allowances. The amount of withholdings shall be determined by the Minister of Health and Social Welfare in coordination with the Minister of Economy and Planning.

Article 67

After completion of the compulsory treatment, upon request of the medical establishment the Municipal People's Councils at the place of residence and at the place of work of the person, together with the respective medical authorities and public organizations shall take care for his/her settlement at work and at home, and to protect such person from alcoholic or another addiction relapse.

Article 68

(1) A person who in a drunken state cannot control his/her behavior or who is in a state of helplessness due to use of alcohol, shall be admitted by compulsion to sobering establishment for a period of 24 hours. Should such person need more extensive medical service, he/she shall be admitted to medical establishment.

(2) Sobering establishments shall be set up by the Ministry of Interior in coordination with Municipal People's Councils. The Municipal People's Councils shall provide premises for such establishments and funds for their maintenance.

(3) The operation of the sobering establishments shall be managed by the Ministry of Interior.

(4) Fees shall be collected from admitted persons for expenses made at the sobering establishments. The amount of fees and the procedure for collection thereof shall be determined by the Minister of Economy and Planning.

Chapter Nine

PARTICIPATION OF THE CITIZENS AND THE PUBLIC ORGANIZATIONS IN THE PROTECTION OF THE HEALTH OF THE POPULATION

Article 69

For protection of the health of the population every citizen shall be obliged:

1) to comply to public hygiene in his way of life, in the production, education, in the natural and social environments;

2) to cooperate with the government and public bodies in the application of prophylactic measures and control for compliance with the sanitary-hygienic norms and rules;

3) to notify immediately the medical authorities of the occurrence at his home, in the neighborhood or anywhere else of acute contagious disease;

4) to cooperate in the application of quarantine and other measures and for the liquidation of the centers and sources of infection.

Article 70

(Repealed - SG, No. 15/1991)

Article 71

The Bulgarian Red Cross shall organize the education and training of citizens for self-help, mutual assistance and sanitary defence of this country. The Bulgarian Red Cross shall, with the assistance of the management of departments, business and public organizations, organize, prepare and maintain, on a public basis, medical-sanitary units among the population to aid the medical authorities.

Chapter Ten

MEDICAL EQUIPMENT, OPTICS AND APPARATUSES

Article 72

(Amended - SG, No. 15/1991 and No. 36/1995)

The Ministry of Health shall exercise control for compliance of the medical equipment, instruments, sanitary transport, eye optics and hearing devices, with the state standards for reliability and safety, the hygiene norms and the requirements of medicine.

Article 73

(Amended - SG, No. 15/1991 and No. 36/1995)

The materials for eye optics that may be used in this country, as well as the requirements they should meet, shall be determined by the Minister of Health.

Article 74

(Amended - SG, No. 36/1995)

(1) Shops for medical-sanitary materials, optics shops, storehouses for materials for eye optics, optics shops with refraction examination room, shops for medical audio equipment and hearing prosthetics and dental laboratories for making of dental prosthesis structures shall be professionally managed by specialists determined by Regulation of the Minister of Health.

(2) The manufacture and sale of eyeglasses and materials for eye optics shall be done by persons who have completed education in eye optics.

Articles 75, 75a, 75b, 75c, 76, 77 and 78

(Repealed - SG, No. 36/1995)

Chapter Eleven

DRUGS CONTROL

Article 79

(1) The Ministry of Health shall exercise control over the manufacture, processing, storage, use, trade, import, export and accounting of narcotic drugs - intoxicating and psychotropic substances - and of the drugs from which they are obtained.

(2) The Ministry of Health shall control the compliance with obligations ensuing from international agreements, and the compliance with normative acts on narcotic drugs.

Article 80

(1) In this country may be manufactured, processed, imported and stored only narcotic drugs designated for medical, veterinary-medical and research purposes.

(2) The right to manufacture, process, store, import, export, purchase and sell narcotic drugs, shall be granted only to business organizations that have obtained permission from the Ministry of Health. They shall be bound to keep accounting and to exercise control over such activities.

Article 81

Prohibited shall be the import in this country of cannabis indica and erythroxylon coca, as well as the manufacture, import and use of heroin.

Article 82

(1) Producers of opium and poppy capitulae shall be obliged to deliver to the purchase organizations by 30 August the entire quantity of opium and poppy capitulae produced throughout the year. Quantities not delivered by that date shall be considered concealed thereby.

(2) Reserves of opium and poppy capitulae may be kept only by organizations who have permission for their purchase, processing and wholesale trade.

Article 83

(1) Drugs seized by the customs authorities and by the bodies of the Ministry of Interior shall be delivered forthwith to the Ministry of Health and the prosecutor's office shall be notified thereof.

(2) Narcotic drugs obtained, imported, exported, stored or used in violation of provisions of this Act or of international conventions on drugs, shall be expropriated by the state also in case where such actions do not constitute crime or administrative violation.

Article 84

In the case of repeated violation of the provisions of this Act or of international conventions on drugs, the Minister of Health may terminate drugs related activities in enterprises, organizations and institutes.

Article 85

The procedure for exercising control over drugs shall be determined by Regulation of the Minister of Health, in coordination with the Minister of Interior and the Minister of Economy and Planning.

Chapter Twelve

TRAINING, RIGHTS AND OBLIGATIONS OF MEDICAL STAFF

Article 86

The Ministry of Health shall manage the research work in the field of medicine and shall ensure the timely introduction of research achievements in practice.

Article 87

(1) The Ministry of Health shall organize and manage the training, specialization and improvement of qualifications of medical staff with higher, undergraduate and secondary medical education, in compliance with the Higher Education Act and the other legislative provisions.

(2) The Ministry of Health may assign also medical staff from medical establishments and services of People's Councils for training and improvement of their qualifications at medical research institutes and education establishments.

Article 88

The right to practice the medical profession shall be granted only to persons who have graduated the respective medical education establishments.

Article 89

Upon receipt of their diplomas for completed higher education, the doctors of medicine - Bulgarian citizens, shall give oath under procedure, set forth in the Rules for application of this Act.

Article 90

(1) In the course of practicing their profession the medical staff shall be bound to exercise exceptional good faith and to use all their knowledge and means available to them for protection and recovery of human health.

(2) The medical staff shall be bound to render first aid to those in need anywhere and at any time.

Article 91

(1) The medical staff shall be bound to keep in confidence the facts, related to the health status of patients, the way of infection and other circumstances that the patients and their relatives are interested to keep in confidence, unless it is permitted by law to notify some government authorities of such circumstances.

(2) This obligation applies also to students in medicine and stomatology, physicians at probation and students at undergraduate and secondary medical schools.

Article 92

The Minister of Health may prohibit medical staff from practicing their profession should they be afflicted with chronic alcoholism, mental and other diseases, which render practicing the profession impossible. Such a measure shall be applied after considering medical resolution from the Institute of the Republic for medical labour expert examination.

Article 93

Medical staff with higher, undergraduate and secondary education, who in the course of more than five years since obtaining qualifications have not began to practice their profession, or who have discontinued the practice of that profession for the same period, may be appointed to work in the line of their speciality after passing an examination before a commission and under program as specified by the Ministry of Health.

Article 94

(Amended - SG, No. 89/1988)

In the case of social disaster, epidemics and other emergencies, the Minister of Health may assign on business trips on the account of the Ministry of Health medical staff from one municipality to another, regardless of the subordination of the medical establishment where they work.

Article 95

In the interest of health the Minister of Health may transfer to work from one municipality to another and to research institutes of the Ministry of Health medical staff from the medical establishments of the Ministry and of the People's Councils, with their consent, for a period of up to three years, whereas during that period their positions and jobs shall be retained.

Article 96

Managers of hygiene-epidemiologic inspectorates and their deputies shall be appointed by the Minister of Health in coordination with the executive committees of the Municipal People's Councils.

Chapter Thirteen

ADMINISTRATIVE PENALTIES AND PROCEDURE
FOR IMPOSING COMPULSORY ADMINISTRATIVE MEASURES

Article 97

(Amended - SG, No. 89/1988)

(1) Persons who fail to appear for prophylactic medical examination and tests, after being notified thereof, shall be penalized by fine of up to 30 Leva.

(2) Persons who fail to appear for compulsory tests pursuant to Article 36a, shall be penalized by fine from 30 to 100 Leva, and in the case of repeated offense - by fine of 100 to 300 Leva. Persons who have refused to come voluntarily for tests shall be brought by force with the assistance of the bodies of the Ministry of Interior, by order of the head physician of the medical establishment.

(3) The penalties under the preceding paragraphs shall be imposed on officials who have inhibited the appearance of persons summoned for prophylactic medical examination and tests.

(4) Persons who fail to fulfill their official duties ensuing from normative and other acts against AIDS, shall be penalized by fine from 100 to 300 Leva, and in the case of repeated offense - by fine of up to 500 Leva, regardless of the disciplinary responsibility.

(5) In the case of third offense under the preceding paragraph the person shall be fired for disciplinary reasons from his/her position.

Article 98

(Amended - SG, No. 36/1995)

Persons who violate Articles 55, 56, 57 and 58, paragraph (3), shall be penalized, unless subject to more severe punishment, by fine up to 100 Leva, and in the case of repeated perpetration of the same crime - by fine of up to 200 Leva.

Article 99

(1) (Amended - SG, No. 27/1986) Managers of departments, business and public organizations, as well as the respective officials who fail to fulfill their obligations under Article 9, except those related to labour hygiene, Articles 12 and 13, except those related to noise intensity within the limits of hygiene norms in enterprises, shall be penalized by fine up to 200 Leva, and in the case of repeated offense of the same nature - up to 300 Leva.

(2) The penalty under the preceding paragraph shall be also imposed on those who fail to fulfill their obligations under Article 69, item 3.

Article 100

(1) Trainers, sport referees and other officials who admit to training or competition athletes who have not been subjected to the compulsory medical examinations, or who are under medical ban from participation, shall be penalized by fine of up to 80 Leva.

(2) The penalty under the preceding paragraph shall be also imposed on organizers of sport events that have been carried out without the provision of medical service.

Article 101

(Amended - SG, No. 15/1991)

Persons who violate the provisions of this Act, of the Rules or the Regulations for its application, except the cases under Articles 97, 98, 99, 100 and 102, shall be penalized by fine from 50 to 1500 Leva, unless subject to more severe punishment, and in the case of repeated offense of the same nature - by fine of up to 3000 Leva.

Article 102

(1) Medical specialists who indulge in repeated violations in practicing their profession due to negligence or ignorance, who make gross mistakes in their work or do immoral acts in abuse of their official position shall be, unless subject to more severe punishment, penalized by debarring their right to practice their profession for a period from 3 months to 2 years.

(2) (Amended - SG, No. 15/1991) The penalty under the preceding paragraph shall be also imposed on medical specialists who have private practice in violation of the provisions of this Act or of the Rules for its application.

Article 103

(Amended - SG, No. 89/1988)

(1) Violations under Articles 97, 98, 99, 101 and 102 shall be ascertained by protocols drawn up by physicians who carry out prophylactic medical examinations or compulsory tests, by the state sanitary inspectors and by officials with the Ministry of Health, assigned by the Minister of Health. The violations under Article 98, paragraph (1) shall be ascertained also by protocols drawn up bodies of the Ministry of Interior.

(2) Violations under Article 100 shall be ascertained by protocols drawn up by bodies authorized by the Minister of Health to carry out medical control of physical culture, sports and tourism.

(3) The penal rulings for violations under Article 102 shall be issued by the Minister of Health.

(4) The penal rulings for violations under Article 100 shall be issued by the head physician of the Center of the Republic for sport medicine, by the head physicians of medical-physical culture dispensaries, and where no such dispensaries are available - by the chairmen of the executive committees of Municipal People's Councils.

(5) The penal rulings for violations under Articles 97, 98, 99 and 101 shall be issued by the Minister of Health, by the Chief State Sanitary Inspector, by directors of hygiene-epidemiologic inspectorates and by chairmen of executive committees of Municipal People's Councils, depending on the subordination of the official who has ascertained the violation. The penal rulings for violations under Article 98, paragraph (1), when ascertained by protocols drawn up by bodies of the Ministry of Interior, shall be issued by the Minister of Interior or by officials assigned by him.

(6) In the case of obviously inconsiderable violations of hygiene norms and requirements and sanitary rules, the sanitary inspectors may impose fine on site up to the amount of 5 Leva against receipt.

(7) Proposals for imposing disciplinary sanctions under Article 97, paragraphs (4) and (5) shall be made by the head physicians or by the bodies of the state sanitary control.

Article 104

(1) Drawing up of protocols, the issue and appeal of penal rulings for violations under Articles 97-102 shall be pursuant to the provisions of the Administrative Violations and Penalties Act.

(2) "Repeated offense" shall be administrative violation made within one year after entry into force of the penal ruling with which penalty has been imposed on the perpetrator for the same violation.

Article 105

(1) The measures under Article 21, items 3, 4 and 5 shall be imposed by order of the Minister of Health, of the Chief Sanitary Inspector and of the directors of hygiene-epidemiologic inspectorates.

(2) The measures under Article 21, item 6 shall be imposed by order of the state sanitary inspectors.

(3) The measures under Article 53, paragraph (4), shall be imposed by bodies authorized to exercise medical control over physical culture, sports and tourism.

(4) The measures under the preceding paragraphs, the orders for compulsory treatment or tests pursuant to Article 36, paragraph (2), and Article 36a, the orders under Article 84, as well as the other individual administrative protocols of the medical bodies, which affect rights or interests of citizens or organizations protected by law, except for penal rulings, shall be subject to appeal pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act.

(5) The appeal shall not stop the application of measures under Article 21, items 3, 4, 5 and 6, Article 36, paragraph (2), Article 36a, Article 53, paragraph (4) and Article 84.

CONCLUDING PROVISIONS

1. This Act shall come into force as from 1 January 1974 and it shall repeal:

The Overall Unification of Health Services Act (State Gazette, No. 11/1945);

The Medical Control over Physical Culture, Sports and Tourism Act (State Gazette, No. 286/1945);

The Taking of Additional Work by Sanitary Persons Act (State Gazette, No. 163/1946);

The State Sanitary Pharmaceutical Enterprise Act (State Gazette, No. 138/1947);

The Decree on organization of blood donation and struggle against tuberculosis in Bulgaria (State Gazette, No. 141/1948);

The Decree on resort management (State Gazette, No. 214/1948);

The Decree on allocation and appointment of medical and health staff (Izvestia, No. 137/1950);

The Decree on nation-wide free medical service (Izvestia, No. 23/1951);

The Decree on struggle against contagious diseases and malaria (Izvestia, No. 68/1951);

The Decree on professional work and rights of medical and sanitary workers (Izvestia, No. 71/1951);

The Decree on admittance of drunken persons to sobering establishments (State Gazette, No. 35/1966);

The Decree on compulsory treatment of persons afflicted with alcoholic and other addiction diseases (State Gazette, No. 60/1970);

The Decree on state sanitary control (State Gazette, No. 15/1972).

2. (New - SG, No. 64/1993)

(1) Within one month following the entry into force of this Act the Council of Ministers should determine the hospital base necessary for the training process and the research work at the Higher Medical Institute in Sofia.

(2) Within one month following the entry into force of this Act the Council of Ministers upon proposal of the respective Municipal Council should determine the hospital base necessary for the training process and the research work at the higher medical institutes in Varna, Pleven, Plovdiv and Stara Zagora.

3. For the application of this Act the Council of Ministers shall approve Rules, and the Minister of Health shall issue Regulations and Instructions.

The implementation of the Act shall be assigned to the Minister of Health.

CONCLUDING PROVISIONS

to the Act for Amendment of the People's Health Act
(SG, No. 15/1991)

20. The Council of Ministers and the Minister of Health should, within one month following the entry into force of this Act, issue the Rules and Regulations as provided therein.

21. In the People's Health Act everywhere the words "the Ministry of people's health and social welfare" and "the Minister of people's health and social welfare" shall be replaced by "the Ministry of Health" and "the Minister of Health", respectively.

22. Article 21 of the Religious Denominations Act (promulgated, Izvestia, No. 48/1949; amended - Nos. 1 and 13/1951) shall be repealed.