The new life and saved lives, hundreds of thousands of smiles, dedication, high professionalism – this is gathered in the oldest AG hospital in our country – Maichin dom. On Sunday, the medical facility will celebrate 120 years since its establishment. With more than a century of its own history, today the hospital competes in terms of modern treatment with Western European obstetrics and gynecology hospitals.
Penka Dimitrova started as a midwife in the children’s ward of the hospital. He learns from his older colleagues and from the doctors. Along with the joy, she also experiences the difficult moments in her work – such as caring for women in labor with various illnesses.
“We’ve had really, really hard times,” she admits. “Many times we have been able to help these women to be here among us.”
Among the rescued mothers with heavy pregnancies is 35-year-old Radoslava from Belica. During her second pregnancy 4 years ago, she went to the hospital several times because of severe abdominal pain. A doctor from Razlog discovered the problem in the fifth month – an improperly stitched uterus during the first cesarean birth and a condition that threatens the life of the mother and the fetus. He directs her to Mother’s House.
“He repeated it several times – that only there is a chance for the child to surviveif I happen to give birth.”
At the hospital, they mastered the baby’s restraint. And they found another problem – the woman in labor has a mixed Rh factor of the blood group, which is why after the first birth, an injection was not made, giving a chance for a second pregnancy.
“I spent 4 months at Mother’s Home and every day was a gift. By the end of the eighth month they were able to hold him.”
Thus, at the beginning of the ninth month, Ivan was born. After a few hours it worsened, necessitating intubation. They give him a 10% chance to survive. Today, the mother calls his rescue a miracle.
The high level of professionalism, which is a standard for Penka Dimitrova and all her colleagues, is maintained by the director Prof. Ivan Kostov. The obstetrician-gynecologist took over the management of the hospital in 2016.
“It’s a mother’s home the hospital that is the cradle of maternal and child care in the health care system. That is why Mother’s Home was named by Princess Maria-Louise, who 120 years ago donated her entire dowry and founded the first maternity hospital. Until then, Bulgaria did not have a specialized hospital to care for pregnant women, women in labor and newborn children. Mother’s Day is a legendan institution,” says Prof. Kostov.
When it was established, Maichin dom was located in the buildings of the current National Center for Transfusion Hematology, near the Central Station. During the bombings during the Second World War, the hospital was moved to the Pleven village of Dolni Dabnik. Documents describing this difficult period for our country are kept in the archives. At that time, the hospital was headed by Prof. Ivan Ivanov, a student of the patriarch of Bulgarian obstetrics and gynecology, Prof. Dimitar Stamatov.
Today’s hospital director is very impressed with the professionalism with which laborers, equipment, beds, drugs were moved, “with brilliant accountability”.
“And after they return to Sofia, after nearly a year and a half, not a single needle is missingnot a single instrument is missing.”
Due to her belief in professionalism and the meaning of the midwifery profession, Penka Dimitrova never thought of leaving Mother’s Home:
“I have had endless opportunities, opportunities to move to another hospital, to go abroad. And for a minute it never occurred to me to leave our hospital. I grew up in it, I grew old in it, I’m 72 years old and I still have no intention of leaving it,” she says and adds:
“Our profession is an extremely noble profession.”