A brief history of the Faculty of Dental Medicine
The education laws from 1898 (art.89) state that “pharmaceutical and dental education” are part of the Faculty of Medicine in Bucharest, regarding “the courses and laboratories, as well as the placements in hospitals and mandatory examinations which must be passed in order to obtain the title of Dentist”. Nevertheless, the stipulations of these laws concerning the education of dentists were not officially enforced back then.
The Sanitary Law from 1910 reiterated the statement that the dentistry practices should only be reserved for graduates of the Medical Faculty, although it also acknowledged the rights earned by dentists without the title of ‘medical doctor’, who had obtained specialty studies abroad. Despite this law, numerous individuals, who had only studied dentistry and obtained a practice through apprenticeship, would still work in this domain.
In 1923, the Professorial Council of the Medical Faculty allowed Dimitrie D. Niculescu to conduct free dentistry conferences for medical students. One year later, he published the first Dentistry Atlas written in Romanian.
In 1929, the Clinical Dentistry Institute was founded at Coltea Hospital, coordinated by Professor Mina Minovici. It served as an institution for medical students to improve their abilities after graduating from university, as the dental specialty had no corresponding opportunities in the context of higher medical education. Afterwards, the administration of the institute was conducted by Professor Iacob Iacobovici, and the headquarters were relocated to Colentina Hospital in 1941.
In 1935, Dan Theodorescu was named the primary care physician in maxillofacial surgery at Coltea Hospital, thus setting up the first oral and maxillofacial surgery department in the entire country.
Two years later, Dan Theodorescu became the coordinator of the Clinical Dentistry Institute, managing all of the 3 departments: oral-dental therapy, orthopedic (prosthetic) dentistry and maxillofacial surgery.
In 1938, the Minister of Public Education declared an initiative to restructure higher education, starting with academic reorganization; this led to the foundation of the Dental Conference of the Medical Faculty, under the leadership of Dan Theodorescu. A year later, Dan Theodorescu earned the title of professor. Through his efforts, the Dental Institute was relocated to a three-floor pavilion of Colentina Hospital, comprising a lecture hall, 74 beds, 60 complete dental units and a dental techniques laboratory. That same year, the School of Dental Nurses and, in 1943 the school of Dental Technicians, were also founded as extensions of the Dentistry Institute.
In 1948, the educational reform (decree 312/9 Nov. 1948) transformed the Clinical Dentistry Institute into the Faculty of Dental Medicine with its first Dean, Professor Emil Eugen Repciuc.
Professor Valerian Popescu, a corresponding member of the Romanian Academy, played a major role in the organization of dental education in Bucharest. Being the successor of Professor Dan Theodorescu in governing the Maxillofacial Surgery Clinic, Professor Valerian Popescu dominated the dental scientific community in the second half of the past century, also representing the Faculty as its Dean.
A series of important figures worth mentioning, whose reputation promoted the development of the academic and didactic activity of the dentistry faculty over the last decades, include: prof. Dr.Eugen Costa, prof. Dr. Lucian Ene, prof. Dr.Stelică Dumitrescu, prof. Dr.Vasilescu, prof. Dr. Andrei Nass, prof. Dr. Ioan Gall, prof. Dr. Alexandru Epurescu, prof. Dr. Memet Gafar, prof. Dr. Nicolae Duţescu, prof. Dr. Corneliu Burlibaşa, prof. Dr. Pătru Firu, prof. Dr. Livia Zarnea, prof. Dr. Nicolae Gănuţă, prof. Dr. Sergiu Ioniţă, prof. Dr. Valerian Popescu, prof. Dr. Constantin Andreescu, Prof. Dr. Stelorian Stănescu.
Dimitriu Bogdan Alexandru
Professor, MD, PhD
VICE-DEAN OF UNIVERSITY UNDERGRADUATE AND MASTER'S EDUCATION STUDIES