Fresenius Medical Care, the world’s leading provider of products and services for people with chronic kidney failure, has opened a new technology center for developing dialysis machines at its Schweinfurt, Germany production and development site. About 220 employees from different departments will work together on a project basis in the new 7,500-square-meter (81,000-square-foot) building, in which the company has invested about €22 million.
Due to the pandemic, the opening ceremony was a purely digital event. The online conference included a video tour through the building. In addition, employees presented their future workstations in the technical, laboratory and testing areas, as well as offices, break spaces and conference rooms.
“As much as virtual cooperation from home office works well: In combination with virtual networking, person-to-person interactions on site are irreplaceable, and so I am really looking forward to the cooperation in our new technology center,” said Johann Brede, Project Director of the technology center. “With short and direct access ways and corridors, and an open structure, the entire building is designed for networking and exchanges between different disciplines and teams. This way, we can develop for our patients even better dialysis machines that will also cost less.”
Construction of the five-floor building, which required some 5,700 cubic meters of concrete and 900 tons of steel, took three years. The technology center is built to modern environmental standards and includes, among other features, a “green roof.”
The plant in Schweinfurt, which was established in 1979, is Fresenius Medical Care’s largest development and production facility for dialysis machines and other medical devices. The company now employs more than 1,200 people in the city in northern Bavaria, about 120 kilometers (75 miles) east of Frankfurt. About a third of them work in research and development.
Dialysis machines are among the most important products for treating chronic kidney disease. During treatment, the dialysis machine pumps the patient’s blood through bloodlines, monitors its circulation through the dialyzer, and adds anti-coagulants. Treatments are generally carried out three times weekly, and take between three and six hours each.