The present qualification characteristics of the course of study for a specialty of the regulated professions of Pharmacy for the educational and qualification degree of Master, mode of study: full-time, with the professional qualification of Master of Science in Pharmacy, has been elaborated in compliance with the requirements of art.39, par. 2 of the Higher Education Act, and it conforms to the legal requirements of the Higher Education Act, to the Directive for the unified state requirements for obtaining a higher education diploma in the speciality of Pharmacy, educational and qualification degree of Master (Decrees № 61/May 5, 2005, State Gazette №32/2005, amended and supplemented in State Gazette № 94/November 25, 2005, № 82/October 10, 2006, №87/October 7, 2008, supplemented in State Gazette №26/April 7, 2009) and Directives 85/432/EEC, 85/433/EEC and 2005/36/EEC, which regulate the professional competence and the types of activities that a holder of a university diploma of Master of Science in Pharmacy must be able to carry out.
Medical University – Varna "Prof. Dr Paraskev Stoyanov" educates students of a specialty of the regulated professions of Pharmacy, mode of study: full-time, who upon completion of their higher education, obtain the educational and qualification degree of Master, with the professional qualification of Master of Science in Pharmacy. The training is conducted in accordance with educational documents which include the present qualification characteristics, a curriculum, study programs and annual academic calendar, whose content is in accordance with the requirements of Directives 85/432/EEC, 85/433/EEC and 2005/36/EEC, with the ones of the Higher Education Act about regulated education and training, and with the Directive for the unified state requirements for obtaining a higher education diploma in the speciality of Pharmacy, educational and qualification degree of Master (Decrees № 61/May 5, 2005, State Gazette №32/2005, amended and supplemented in State Gazette № 94/November 25, 2005, № 82/October 10, 2006, №87/October 7, 2008, supplemented in State Gazette №26/April 7, 2009).
The qualification characteristics of the course of study for a specialty of the regulated professions of Pharmacy for the educational and qualification degree of Master sets the following requirements to the course of study and the enrolled students:
- Course of study at a university faculty, with a full-time mode of study, with a duration of at least 5 academic years;
- Access to education after completed secondary education and successfully passed written examinations;
- Study of compulsory, elective and facultative academic subjects, with a minimum of 3015 academic hours of compulsory subjects, according to the above mentioned unified state requirements;
- Consistent study of the subjects carried out on two levels: a fundamental and a specialized pharmaceutical, theoretical, and practical training;
- The content of the academic subjects must be in accordance with the current state of the medical and pharmaceutical sciences, practice and pedagogy, as well as with the experience of the European Union member states;
- Lectures, conducted by habilitated university lecturers, and practical training;
- Two practical trainings in:
Botany – after the fourth semester, with a duration of six days, 8 hours per day for a total of 48 hours;
Pharmacognosy – after the sixth semester, with a duration of six days, 8 hours per day for a total of 48 hours;
- A pre-graduation internship after the ninth semester with a duration of 6 months, 4 weeks per month, 5 working days per week, 6 hours per day for a total of 720 hours. The pre-graduation internship is conducted at community and hospital pharmacies, approved in the established manner to serve as training bases (art. 2, par. 3 of Directive 85/432/EEC).
The theoretical and practical training during the course of study is aimed at acquiring sufficient knowledge about:
- Medicines and substances used for the preparation of medicines;
- Pharmaceutical technologies and control of formulations (physical, chemical, biological, and microbiological);
- Metabolism and the effect of medicines and toxic substances, as well as the use of drugs;
- Evaluation of the scientific information about drugs and the ability to provide appropriate information based on this knowledge;
- Legal and other requirements, related to the pharmaceutical practice.
The control over the extent of mastery of the above mentioned professional knowledge and skills is carried out through the system for current control and through the semester examinations, determined in the curriculum and conducted in the order stipulated in the Regulations on Educational Affairs of Medical University – Varna.
The course of study ends after the fulfilment of the curriculum requirements, including finishing the pre-graduation internship, by the student successfully passing the following state examinations:
1. Pharmaceutical Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Analysis
2. Pharmacognosy, Pharmacology, and Toxicology
3. Pharmaceutical Technology and Biopharmacy
4. Social Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Legislation
The examinations are conducted before a State Examination Committee, which includes at least three habilitated university lecturers in the relevant main subject. The membership in every examination committee is determined by a Rector's decree; the committee can include people, suggested by the Health Minister.
At the end of the course of studies, the student who is to obtain a Master of Science in Pharmacy diploma ought to possess professional knowledge and skills in the following areas:
1. Fundamental biomedical and clinical knowledge about:
- Structure and functions of the human body;
- Health, illness, and their determinants;
- Diseases and methods for their treatment;
- Pharmacology and drug intoxications;
- Medical and pharmaceutical terminology.
2. Special pharmaceutical knowledge about:
- Substances used for the preparation of medicines;
- Pharmaceutical technologies and physical, chemical, biological and microbiological trials of the pharmaceutical formulations;
- Metabolism and the effects of medicinal products, the effect of toxic substances and the use of drugs;
- Evaluation of scientific data about drugs and their healing effects;
- Qualification systems of medicinal products.
3. Special pharmaceutical skills about:
- Preparation of pharmaceutical dosage forms of medicinal products;
- Production and control of medicinal products and medical sanitary materials;
- Storage, preservation, and trade distribution of medicinal products and medical sanitary materials;
- Supply, preparation, and preservation of medicinal products and medical sanitary materials in community pharmacies;
- Evaluation and allocation of medicinal products and medical sanitary materials by prescription in community pharmacies;
- Assessment of toxicity of one-time and 24-hours dosages of prescribed medicinal products;
- Assessment of the incompatibility of different medicinal products;
- Evaluation of the substitutability of different medicinal products and offering them to consumers in an appropriate way;
- Maintaining of constant interconnectedness with health agencies and organizations, health insurance funds and other structures, related to drug supply;
- Conducting marketing research on medicinal products, including participation in pharmacoeconomic research;
- Offering and giving information and advice about medicinal products and medical sanitary materials;
- Supply, preparation and preservation of medicinal products and medical sanitary materials in hospital pharmacies;
- Evaluation and allocation of prescription medicinal products and medical sanitary materials by prescription in hospital pharmacies;
4. Organisational and Management knowledge and skills about:
- Legislation and regulations in the field of medicinal products in humane medicine and pharmacies;
- Legislation about organization and management of pharmacies and its application;
- Use of modern information technologies and, whenever necessary, collecting, organizing, analysing, and presenting information;
- Elaboration of business plans and specialized reports.
5. Communicative and other skills and abilities for:
- Written and oral communication with doctors, patients, clients, and health organizations, including the National Health Insurance Fund and companies;
- Solving of common and specific professional problems;
- Tolerance and acknowledgement of ethic behavioural norms;
- Critical, creative, and innovative thinking;
- Realistic self-assessment of abilities.
Students who have completed the full course of study and have fulfilled their educational obligations according to the curriculum, and have successfully passed all semester and state examinations, receive a diploma for higher education in the specialty of Pharmacy for the educational and qualification degree of Master with the professional qualification of Master of Science in Pharmacy, along with the corresponding European diploma supplement.
The completed higher education, as evidenced by the obtained diploma, will allow the holder of the Master of Science in Pharmacy to work independently in different areas of drug supply and drug and medical devices production – in community and hospital pharmacies, drug warehouses, pharmaceutical laboratories, control and analytical laboratories, factories for the production of medicinal products, research and experimental laboratories, etc., which at least includes the carrying out of the following activities:
- Preparation of drugs in pharmaceutical forms;
- Drug production and control;
- Drug control in a laboratory for drug control;
- Storage, preservation and distribution of drugs in the commercial network;
- Preparation, control, preservation, and delivery of drugs in pharmacies;
- Preparation, control, preservation, and delivery of drugs in hospitals;
- Offering information and consultations about the drugs.
The observance of European directives 85/432/EEC and 85/433/EEC is a prerequisite for the future convertibility of the diplomas of Master of Science in Pharmacy, obtained at Medical University – Varna; it confers the right to practice the profession in European Union member states, in other countries from the European Economic Area, and in Switzerland, in accordance with the national legislation of the respective country.