The Clinic for Cardiovascular Surgery at the Scientific Institute of Surgery of the Medical Academy was established on November 7, 1977. Over the years, it grew into UNSBAL "St. Catherine". The initial staff of the clinic consisted of surgeons, cardiologists and nurses. In 1978, the first competition for assistants, cardiovascular surgeons, anesthesiologists and cardiologists was held.
The activity begins primarily with vascular surgery, cardiac operations are performed less often. Additional activities are also carried out: ozone therapy, treatment in the conditions of barochambers and experimental surgery. Teaching activity begins with students of operative and cardiovascular surgery and specialists in cardiovascular surgery.
Scientific activity begins with the development of vascular prostheses, oxygenators and reperfusion devices.
In 1984, the government commissioned Prof. Dr. Alexander Chirkov to build modern cardiac surgery in Bulgaria. The already established clinic of Prof. Dr. Milan Milev with its available staff is taken as a base. In a short time, a new style of work was introduced, close to the European level at that time. In 1984-1985, the base was modernized and state-of-the-art equipment was purchased. Significant successes are achieved in a short period of time. On May 14, 1986, the first heart transplant was performed in the Balkans. A number of doctors and nurses are sent for specialization in Europe and the USA, who then apply what they learn in their work.
On February 24, 1994, the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery was also established. Its first supervisor was Prof. Dr. Alexander Chirkov, and since 2000
In 2000, the new part of the Cardiology Clinic was opened, which provides very good conditions for both doctors, patients and students. On June 9, 2004, the hospital received the first certificate in Bulgaria for the implementation of a quality management system for medical services, according to the international standard ISO 9001:2000.
In 2022, the name of the hospital was changed to "Prof. Dr. Alexander Chirkov" in honor of its creator.
Today, the hospital's activities give it a leading place among hospitals and cardiology and cardiac surgery centers in Bulgaria, the Balkans and the European Union.