ArjoHuntleigh goes home

Sunday, January 22, 2012

ADDISON, Ill. - ArjoHuntleigh may be best known for manufacturing patient lifts for the acute care market, but Phil Croxford is trying to change that.

Croxford, president and CEO of Addison, Ill.-based ArjoHuntleigh North America, helped launch a new division called ArjoHuntleigh Home Care in December.

"When I came on board in 2008, I couldn't understand why we weren't marketing to the continuum of care," he said.

The foundation for the homecare division: BHM Medical, a Canadian company that ArjoHuntleigh acquired in 2004 that manufactures lifts for use in the home. ArjoHuntleigh has integrated BHM Medical into its North American commercial operation and combined BHM Medical's product portfolio with its own.

That means ArjoHuntleigh Home Care offers everything from patient lifts to bathing systems to wound care products to medical beds, among other equipment.

"We've added more products to the bank," Croxford said.

A big reason the homecare market in the United States is attractive to ArjoHuntleigh, a global company that employs more than 4,400 and servers patients in more than 100 countries: Healthcare reform efforts here are shifting the emphasis from more expensive institutional care to less expensive home care, Croxford said.

"The homecare market will probably be double the acute and long-term care markets combined," he said. "There are people out there who are struggling with just surviving in their environment, so it's a need that still remains untapped."

ArjoHuntleigh's products can help patients stay in their homes and out of hospitals, Croxford said.

"All of our products prevent an injury, whether it's a patient developing an ulcer or a patient falling out of bed--you name it," he said.

ArjoHuntleigh plans to use its connections and clout in the acute care market to propel its homecare division, Croxford said.

"Our No. 1 customer is the Department of Veterans Affairs," he said. "So one of our big pushes now is to work with VA facilities to help them get veterans discharged so they can live a normal life in their own environment."