Exceptional encounters at HYGIENICUM

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Extraordinary, in many ways, was the FF4U (Fast Forward 4 You) event "METEKA & BRUCHA meet HYGIENICUM", which took place on 15 September 2020 in cooperation with the Green Tech Cluster at the HYGIENICUM competence center for food and industrial hygiene. Despite the "yellow traffic light", about 40 interested people, well equipped with masks and in compliance with all necessary protective measures, found their way to the premises in Graz-Gösting, which were only completed this year.

Laboratory areas and PRC test station
After a short introduction of the participating companies and the host, Michael Stelzl, the visitors were allowed to visit various laboratories in the fields of chemistry, molecular biology and microbiology. The range is very broad and includes laboratories for allergen detection, food testing and microbiological detection (of pathogenic germs such as salmonella and moulds) as well as pest control. The Hygienicum Graz also offers various consulting services."Since March 2020, we have also been offering corona tests using the PCR method," explains Michael Stelzl. Since then, up to 300 samples have been conducted daily - making the company one of the leading regional providers of PCR tests. "As part of the event, the Hygienicum Graz made it possible for us to have our participants tested on site voluntarily and free of charge. We are very pleased that this unique offer was accepted by so many! Hardly 24 hours later we were able to announce confidently: All tested participants were negative", said Johann Harer, managing director of the Styrian human technology cluster.

Successful restructuring despite crisis
The analysed samples of the tests are partly examined in the newly built second floor. In the first half of 2020, a clean room with air lock, a mould spore room and an incubation room were built, implemented by BRUCHA Reinraumbau. Two further cold rooms are still in planning. "Despite the SARS-CoV-2 lockdown, there were almost no restrictions, the project was completed on time", states Thomas Unger of BRUCHA Reinraumbau. BRUCHA produces the so-called BRUCHAPanels® and is therefore specialized in cold and deep-freeze storage construction, industrial hall and facade construction, interior fittings for high demands alternating to dry construction as well as clean room, environmental simulation & test chamber construction for customized system solutions.

But where to dispose of the highly infectious waste?
The infectious waste, which is produced by the numerous samples of any kind, is collected in suitable containers and treated in the house by the waste decontamination device "MEDISTER" of the company METEKA GmbH. In this process the waste is heated by using microwave technology and the previously infectious material can be disposed of as non-hazardous household waste. "We are talking about a non-contamination strategy here, in addition to the prevention of infections and the protection of patients and employees, economic efficiency is a very important basis for the decision to purchase the MEDISTER", reports Roland Katschnig of METEKA.

Success through cooperation
Thanks to the successful collaboration of three companies, the HYGIENICUM was able to react quickly to the situation that has been in effect since March and is now, together with BRUCHA and METEKA, one of the outstanding best-practice examples of our cluster companies.

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