The two hospitals of Zimnicea (RO) and Svishtov (BG) are located close to the Romanian-Bulgarian border and face common challenges related to inaccessible public healthcare systems and poor healthcare availability (due to shortage of funds and medical staff). As a consequence, patients in the area are forced to seek quality healthcare in larger cities instead.
‘Your Health Matters’ is a project which aims to improve the efficiency of healthcare services in this region and facilitate cooperation between cross border institutions. To do so, it enables the exchange of experiences between healthcare employees, and the modernisation of facilities through renovations and purchase of modern medical equipment.
Zimnicea, Teleorman County (Romania), and Svishtov, Veliko Tarnovo District (Bulgaria)
The ‘Your Health Matters’ project is financed by the Interreg Programme Romania-Bulgaria 2014-2020 (EUR 1.2 million of ERDF contribution) under priority axis 5, “An efficient region”. It is led by the Zimnicea Town Territorial Administrative Unit (RO) in cooperation with Svishtov Municipality (BG).
The main achievement of ‘Your Health Matters’ is the modernisation of the two hospitals. Responding to both hospitals’ respective needs, the project has enabled the purchase of cutting-edge equipment for the Zimnicea hospital, while the Svishtov hospital has undergone building renovation and benefitted from specific new medical equipment, including for their ambulance service. The share of citizens with access to modern treatment has increased, and patients in the region no longer need to travel to larger cities to receive complex and high-quality diagnostics.
Healthcare availability in the area has increased and both institutions have improved the efficiency and quality of services provided. This has been achieved through equipment upgrades, and also through the extensive exchange of experience and good practice during trips where staff visited the hospital on the other side of the border.
In the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, Zimnicea City Hospital supported the Caritas Rosiori de Vede Municipal Hospital, which had been designated as a support hospital for the treatment of patients infected with the virus. Since it did not have all the necessary equipment to treat covid patients, Zimnicea City Hospital provided medical equipment previously purchased through the project, further proving the success of the project in enhancing cooperation in the area.