Safe and economic waste management

The amount of waste produced by the Vienna General Hospital – Medical University Campus (AKH Vienna) and the variety of its composition is substantial. A total of 15,000 kg of waste has to be correctly separated, collected and passed on for proper exploitation and disposal every day.

AKH Vienna is unique in its structural size, the range of its services and the number of employees. Around 9,000 people work there, treating around 107,000 inpatients and performing more than 1.7 million outpatient treatments every year. The clinics and departments in medical research have roughly 25,000 m2


laboratories at their disposal. Besides the large quantities of waste

that is produced by the hospital, there is also a wide range of waste types that have to be collected separately. There are recyclable materials and residual hospital waste, in addition to a variety of hazardous waste, such as chemicals,

infectious waste and left-over medication. Further, there are many types of waste

that need special treatment, including body parts, microbiological waste and radioactive waste. The hospital’s technical operations also produce specific types of waste. This can include waste oil, paint and varnish, e-waste and refrigerants, for example. These make up around 5,500 tons of waste, whose correct disposal has to be organised. As a member of the European Union

Austria follows the applicable EU regulations. They are implemented in the form of a national law – the Waste Management Act – in addition to a

number of bylaws. These laws define the waste types’ rating according to specific code numbers. They also define which types of waste are classified as hazardous for humans and the environment and which, therefore, require special treatment. In Austria, the origin and destination of hazardous waste has to be communicated to the authorities using special documents – waste documents. Waste management itself is also regularly assessed by legal compliance. This ensures that all hazardous waste is disposed of in an environmentally appropriate way. A specific Austrian standard regulates

Eduard Frosch

Eduard Frosch has worked in management positions in the City of Vienna‘s healthcare sector since 1979. He established Technical Service Centers in the City of Vienna’s five

largest hospitals, and was responsible for all technical operations as well as the planning and implementation of new constructions, extensions and renovations. Between 1988 and 1992 he was Technical Director at the

Vienna General Hospital – Medical University Campus and was in charge of this new

hospital’s start-up phase. He organised the outsourcing of the Technical Operations Management to VAMED-KMB Hospital Management and Technical Operations

Management Ltd and from 1993 until 2008 he was Managing Director of VAMED-KMB and is now special envoy for the company.


Gerhard Horinek

Gerhard Horinek has been working in the field of waste management in the medical area for over 20 years. As a member of the

expert board of the Austrian Standardization Institute for ÖNORM S2104 Waste from medical institutions he is involved in the

organisation of the waste management in medical institutions. He is chair of the

Austrian Panel for waste and environment for Austrian medical institutions, which

represents a platform for Austrian hospitals.

Since 1994 he has been working for VAMED- KMB Hospital Management and Technical Operations Management and is the waste manager of the Vienna General Hospital.

Susanne Mahnik During 2003 and 2005 Susanne Mahnik was

scientific assistant at the University for Natural Ressources and Applied Life Sciences. While finishing her PHD studies she gained specialised knowledge in analysis and

treatment of hospital wastewater. Since 2001

she has been working for VAMED-KMB Hospital Management and Technical Operations

Management Ltd. and since 2007 she has been head of the Department for Environmental and Hazardous Goods Management.

She is active member of the expert board of the Austrian Standardization Institute for

ÖNORM S2104 Waste from medical institutions as well as member of the Austrian Panel for

waste and environment for Austrian medical institutions. Dr. Mahnik is chair of the

international IWWG Task Group Hospital Waste. IFHE DIGEST 2017

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