The COVID-19 pandemic also presents Fresenius with unprecedented challenges, and our company is doing everything it can to continue providing the best possible care to our patients worldwide. We are not only making every effort to maintain the production and distribution of our products, which are often vital, but to adapt to the new situation and, as far as possible, expand. Our highest priority is the health and safety of patients, caregivers and our own employees.
On this page we are listing a few examples of our activities during the coronavirus crisis. Please keep in mind that this only represents a small selection of our current activities, and that the situation can change at any moment. (Updated: April 30, 2020).
Helios, Germany’s largest private hospital operator and a part of the Fresenius Group, is postponing surgical procedures when medically justifiable and thereby expanding its capacity to care for COVID-19 patients. In addition, the company has increased the number of intensive beds in its hospital network by two-thirds, from 900 to more than 1,500. For this purpose, material reserves are being mobilized and intermediate care beds as well as operating rooms are being equipped and modified with preinstalled ventilation systems.
In order to utilize this additional capacity as effectively as possible, Helios Germany has adjusted some work shifts and taken precautions to send professionals where they are needed most within the company’s hospital network. In addition, several Helios hospitals have admitted COVID-19 patients from Italy in order to help relieve hospitals there. To obtain and secure important data for research into SARS-CoV 2, Helios has established a multi-center COVID-19 register.
In Spain, where conditions are especially strained, Quirónsalud, the country’s largest private hospital operator and also a part of Fresenius Helios, is fully supporting the Spanish government’s efforts to battle the COVID-19 pandemic with all available resources. Quirónsalud increased the number of intensive care beds on short notice. The company is also making every effort to continue providing care for all other patients who urgently need medical support for cases such as chemotherapy and childbirth, as well as emergencies.
"Our employees are all doing extraordinary things. Even at this very difficult time they are still there for our patients."
Thanks to employees’ extraordinary commitment, all Quirónsalud hospitals are successfully maintaining operations despite the high increase in patients with suspected and confirmed cases of the coronavirus. Furthermore, Quirónsalud has succeeded thus far in ensuring that all its hospitals are well-stocked with important medical supplies, despite the sharp increase in demand. And teams of Helios doctors and nurses have already travelled from Germany to Spain to aid their Quirónsalud colleagues.
In Austria, Fresenius Vamed is now using resources from its rehabilitation facilities and clinics to help relieve acute care hospitals. For the time being, the only rehabilitation areas to continue operating will be those where patients urgently need treatment and care, or those that treat patients who would otherwise require acute care. In this regard, the company is also in ongoing contact with healthcare authorities in Germany and Switzerland.
Fresenius Medical Care has further strengthened the existing safety and hygienic standards of its roughly 4,000 dialysis centers worldwide, and taken extensive precautions to ensure patients can continue to receive their lifesaving dialysis treatment. In the United States, Fresenius Medical Care has teamed up with other dialysis providers to create joint capacities for providing isolated treatment of dialysis patients who are infected or may be infected with COVID-19. Furthermore, the company is making 150 additional dialysis machines available to U.S. hospitals for the emergency treatment of COVID-19 patients
The company is also resolutely working to maintain the manufacture and distribution of products for dialysis and extracorporeal therapies. Xenios, a subsidiary of Fresenius Medical Care, has considerably expanded its capacity to produce Novalung, a heart and lung support system for the treatment of acute respiratory or cardiopulmonary failure, and in February delivered a large number of these devices to Wuhan, China, a city hit hard by the pandemic. In Poland, Fresenius Medical Care is making devices for acute dialysis available to hospitals free of charge.
Fresenius Kabi is responding to the significant increase in worldwide demand for essential drugs for the treatment of COVID-19 patients, especially medicines used for sedation such as Propofol and pain management drugs. The company is maximizing supply with all compatible manufacturing capacity now dedicated to these vital drugs. Fresenius Kabi has made significant, future-oriented investments in recent years into both automation and capacity in its manufacturing facilities; these are now enabling treatment for more patients worldwide. Moreover, the company commits itself to keeping prices for essential drugs for COVID-19 patients stable during the pandemic.
In China, Fresenius Kabi was able to bring manufacturing back up to the normal level. Despite some restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic and quarantine measures, it has not experienced any interruption in production. This means Fresenius Kabi is still in a position to provide the public with important pharmaceutical and medical products.
Our Chief Executive Officer, Stephan Sturm, thanks the employees for their exceptional dedication in this crisis: “You are all doing extraordinary things: At this very difficult time you are still there for our patients, and sometimes even seem to do the impossible. I can only express, once again, my most sincere thanks. You are Fresenius!”