As a global healthcare Group, sustainable success in our business is the key to providing high-quality yet affordable healthcare over the long term. Compliance ensures this sustainable growth, determines our corporate culture, and is an integral part of our day-to-day work. We at Fresenius are fully committed to compliance. The wellbeing of our patients is our top priority in everything we do. Our patients rely on us. Therefore, we are committed to the highest quality of our products and services, integrity in dealing with our partners, responsible conduct, and reliability. That is what we stand for. That is what is important to us.
The Code of Conduct defines the framework for our rules. Our Compliance Management System is designed to achieve the implementation of these rules within the company. We have implemented risk-based Compliance Management Systems in all business units and at Fresenius SE & Co. KGaA. These consist of three elements: Prevent, detect, and respond. Thereby, our focus lies on avoiding compliance violations through effective prevention.
“For us, compliant behavior means living responsibility, for the company, for our patients and for our partners. Thereby, we make a decisive contribution to a corporate culture, which is shaped by integrity and transparency – the Fresenius corporate culture, which forms the basis of our success and which we take pride in.”
Sebastian Biedenkopf, Management Board Member responsible for Compliance
We expect our suppliers and business partners to commit to observing applicable laws and standards as well as ethical standards of conduct in their daily business with employees, society, and the environment. This also includes areas described in our human rights statement. We specify and communicate our expectations in our Code of Conduct for business partners to our suppliers, service providers, and other partners.
We expect our suppliers to implement appropriate procedures, which ensure the adherence to laws and standards. Existing procedures need to be improved on a regular basis. Furthermore, we expect our suppliers to take care of their affiliated companies and to ensure that they are compliance with the principles and requirements described and communicate them towards their business partners. They encourage their sub-contractors to comply with the rules while fulfilling their contractual obligations.
For us, compliance means more than acting in accordance with laws and regulations. Compliance means doing the right thing. This comprises all rules, including legal requirements, internal guidelines, our commitments, and ethical principles.
Each of our business segments has appointed a Chief Compliance Officer who is in charge of developing, implementing, and monitoring the Compliance Management System of the business segment. In line with the business structure and organization, the business segments have established compliance responsibilities at the respective organizational levels.
The Corporate Compliance department reports to the Chief Compliance Officer of Fresenius SE & Co. KGaA – the member of the Management Board responsible for Legal, Compliance, and Labor Relations and supports the business segments in further developing their Compliance Management Systems.
The Fresenius Management Board and the Supervisory Boards’ Audit Committee is regularly informed about the status and efficacy of our Compliance Management System.
Our Compliance Management System is designed to achieve the implementation of these rules within the company.
Our company guidelines and processes support us in implementing the applicable rules in practice. Regular risk assessments are used to check applicable guidelines and processes to see if they need any adaptations. Training on the Code of Conduct, on company guidelines in general and on specific compliance subjects explains the application of the rules. In addition, the Corporate Compliance team is happy to answer all questions.
Through on-site visits in the form of audits and workshops, the implementation of compliance initiatives is ensured. The Corporate Compliance team supports employees and managers in defining the necessary internal controls required to ensure compliant behavior in our everyday work. Information on any possible misconduct can help us to improve our guidelines and processes.
Any information received will be checked diligently and comprehensively. If a violation is detected, we will take the necessary measures to remediate the situation. If necessary we will take specific action and improve our company processes. The aim is the continuous improvement of the compliance measures to achieve what is important to us: Quality, integrity, responsibility, and reliability for the wellbeing of our patients.
We at Fresenius are fully committed to compliance. We take even possible misconduct seriously. Any illegal actions or violations of the rules may harm us and Fresenius.
We seek advice for questions concerning our own decisions or those of others. For this, we have the following options available:
- Discussion with managers
- Discussion with the Corporate Compliance team
- Our whistleblowing system (BKMS® System).
The whistleblowing system is open for employees, but also customers, suppliers and other partners.
Reports can be made by name or anonymously at any time of the day. We treat all questions and reports confidentially. We review any information received carefully and comprehensively.
The whistleblowing system can be used for reports concerning Fresenius Management SE, Fresenius SE & Co. KGaA and Fresenius Netcare. Please address reports for Fresenius Medical Care, Fresenius Kabi, Fresenius Helios or Fresenius Vamed to the relevant business segment.
You can contact the Corporate Compliance team under the following e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org. You can reach the whistleblowing system here:
Toll-free Nummer: +49 (0) 800-1401519
Toll Nummer: +49 (0) 30-58943054
Only acting in an exemplary fashion enables us to maintain our integrity and the trust of our colleagues and partners. Every one of us is responsible for our personal behavior.
Thank you for your support and commitment to compliance at Fresenius.
Click here for more detailed information about our grievance mechanism.
We at Fresenius continuously work to save lives, promote health and improve the quality of life of our patients. As a global healthcare company, we consider human rights part of our corporate responsibility. We respect and support human rights as they are defined by international standards, such as the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Fundamental Principles as published by the International Labour Organisation (ILO)1 and aim to fulfill them in our area of responsibility. Moreover, we make a decisive contribution to secure access to good and affordable health care with our products and services. We improve access to health care in many countries for the communities and thereby contribute to supporting human rights.
To fulfill our responsibility as a health care company, we care about different areas in relation to human rights.
1 ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work, adopted June 1st, 1998
The tax strategy of Fresenius Group is aligned with our core values: Wellbeing of patients, Quality, Integrity, Responsibility and Reliability.
The tax compliance objectives are aimed at safeguarding compliance with all tax laws and reporting obligations and enhancing shareholder value based on the following principles:
1. We strive to maintain a culture that ensures that all people in our organization are aware that observing rules and the correct handling of tax matters is essential to the Fresenius Group.
2. The Fresenius Corporate Tax department and the other segment tax functions in the group are creating awareness of tax compliance in the Fresenius Group which is implemented in the Code of Conduct. This includes providing appropriate information and training to employees who perform tax-related tasks. The respective rules and procedures of this tax compliance objectives have been adopted by the Management Board.
3. We have to ensure that all applicable tax laws and reporting obligations are observed in a comprehensive and timely manner and that tax affairs are managed responsibly and transparently. We maintain an internal control system that meets existing standards and ensures that we comply with the tax and reporting obligations in all jurisdictions where we do our business. Appropriate processes and efficient controls shall safeguard that tax risks are identified, systematically recorded and assessed considering their probability of occurrence and potential financial exposure and reported in our external financial reporting.
4. Fresenius Corporate Tax department acts as a central point of contact for all Group tax functions, providing support and advice. Together they act as partners of the operating business units rendering attention, support and advice for transactions as well as for day-to-day business. In addition, the Fresenius Corporate Tax department also performs in whole or in part the tax function for some business segments.
5. Complying with applicable tax laws and upholding our reputation with governmental authorities and the public, we support the relevant business processes as well as sustainable growth of shareholder value with efficient tax planning. We don´t engage in tax arrangements without business purpose or commercial rationale. We routinely seek external professional guidance to reduce uncertainty when required.
6. Intercompany transfer pricing policies are set in accordance with arm’s length’s principles following international standards, i.e. taxes have to be paid on profits according to where value is created.
7. Communication and cooperation regarding tax issues is organized in a way that safeguards that all information is managed in a timely and appropriate manner. Tax is part of the internal control system and Risk Reporting. The FSE Group Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”) will be informed about all relevant tax matters and the development of tax risks. The Fresenius Corporate Tax department reports regularly to the CFO. The responsible CFOs ensures adequate resources for the tax function.
8. We support a cooperative, honest and respectful approach with tax authorities and other public bodies which we consider essential for efficient tax compliance and risk management.
9. We support initiatives such as the initiatives of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (“OECD”) regarding Cooperative Compliance (whereby tax authorities and taxpayers benefit equally from more transparency) and Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (“BEPS”).
10. We continuously monitor changes in tax laws and practice. We recognize the importance of participating in discussions on the development of new tax legislation either directly or through the respective interest groups.
11. We are committed to employing and retaining excellent tax professionals long-term. We continuously work on our employer attractiveness, taking into account personal skills and providing a professional environment for personal development.
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