10 Sep 2013

Healthcare professionals F's biggest challenge

7:04 am on 10 September 2013

Fisher Paykel Healthcare's biggest challenge is convincing healthcare professionals the company's machines deliver better care for patients and save money, the company's head says.

Chief executive Mike Daniell told the New Zealand Shareholders' Association annual investor conference it took 10 years, from the early 1970s, for his company to reach $1 million in annual revenue.

Its revenue in the 12 months to the end of March was more than $556 million and it expects that to rise to more than $630 million in the current year.

The biggest challenge the company faced was convincing clinicians why they should change to Fisher Paykel devices, and that took time, Mr Daniell said.

"We can accelerate that time to a degree but it also just naturally takes time, he said.

"Coupled with that is the challenge of ensuring that our technology does remain the leading technology in our field."

The company did that through research and development, an area it would spend more than $100 million on within about the next four years, Mr Daniell said.

The cost in 2008 of treating somebody with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in an intensive care unit in the United States - the company's biggest market - was more than $40,000, compared with only $2000 to care for somebody as an out-patient. Patients could use Fisher Paykel Healthcare breathing machines at home, he said.