A 20-year union with AZFK

W&H and the Dental Academy for Continuing Professional Development (Akademie für Zahnärztliche Fortbildung) Karlsruhe

How does innovation happen? Alongside recognised factors such as individual ideas, experiences and trials, cooperation are an integral part of the innovation process at W&H. That is why we maintain contact with dentists, technicians plus training and development organisations all over the world. In 2018, our partnership with the ‚Akademie für zahnärztliche Fortbildung Karlsruhe‘ (AZFK) - Academy for Advanced Dental Training celebrates its 20th anniversary.

The renowned institute based in Baden-Württemberg is a valuable partner to W&H as it covers a very wide range of dentistry, ranging from the scientific field to training and development, practical application in the polyclinic and the business perspective. The AZFK has almost 100 years of experience in the dental industry. It was founded in 1920 as a Dental Academy. Following the academic professionalization of dental training, in 1960 the AZFK transformed into its current organisational form and steadily expanded its educational programme.

Today´s cooperation was proposed in autumn 1997 by Theo Fetzner, Head of Sales at W&H Deutschland at the time, and Dr Michael Heners, Director of the Academy. This was contractually sealed in February 1998 after reciprocal visits, and regular meetings have been held between W&H and AZFK representatives ever since.

“The partnership involves a number individual activities,” reports Udo Hörmann (W&H – Head of Product Management). Udo Hörmann has been contact partner and coordinator from the very beginning. “There is a particular focus on discussing topics such as medical trends, development suggestions, possible improvements and market opportunities. But W&H also makes use of the academy’s course programme. In addition, W&H prototypes are being tested for their practicality in Karlsruhe.

This year’s meeting was held on 3rd of August at W&H Bürmoos. Dr Winfried Walther (Director at the AZFK) and four executives from the polyclinic, prophylaxis and technology fields attended as guests of the Academy for Advanced Dental Training. They held brainstorming presentations on the topics of ‘The significance of the instruments produced by W&H in modern dentistry’, ‘Instruments for prophylaxis’, ‘All on 4 – technology’ and ‘Preparation – state of the art”. Among other things, Professor Walther addressed the history of the partnership and stated it has a “naturalness”, which is based on the continuity of both institutions with the mutual objective of “improving dental care”.

Dr Winfried Walther, Director at the AZFK, presenting on ‘The history of the partnership and significance of the instrument produced by W&H in modern dentistry’.

To continued success and many productive years in close partnership

At the end of the afternoon, the 20-year anniversary was celebrated with a feast over the rooftops of Salzburg at the restaurant M32. As a little surprise, W&H President Peter Malata presented a specially designed ‘symbol of unity’. In doing so, W&H wishes the Academy for Advanced Dental Training in Karlsruhe continued success and many productive years in close partnership.

Peter Malata handing over the symbol of the close and long-standing partnership with the AZFK. In the picture (from left to right): Nadja Pfister (Senior Professional Dental Assistant at the AZFK), Bernhard Glatt (Technical Manager at the AZFK), Marco Peichl (Dentist at the AZFK), Dr Andreas Bartols (Senior Polyclinic Physician at the AZFK), Michael Pointner (W&H Director Product Management), Dr Winfried Walther (Director at the AZFK), Daniela Malata (Vice President – Human Resources), Peter Malata (W&H President), Christian Kurz (Key Account Manager at W&H), Johann Eibl (Vice President – Product Innovation), Udo Hörmann (W&H – Head of Product Management)