On A Mission to Deliver the Best Clinical Outcomes in an Effective, Efficient, And Caring Environment
Rapidly evolving health needs and increasing public expectations are raising the bar for health systems to generate better health outcomes and better social values. But staying on the current trajectory will not suffice to address these growing needs. So, what is required today is an optimal healthcare facility that can respond to changing population needs while being valued and trusted by all people.
Built on the foundation of trust, medical excellence and holistic care, one healthcare organization that is dedicated to offering optimum and affordable medical services through its community-based hospitals is Columbia Asia. This pioneering healthcare care company believes that like any basic element of life, health care should be accessible and affordable for everyone—wherever and whenever they need it. However, either due to the expensive nature or lack of wider reach of healthcare facilities, not all have access to quality healthcare. Determined to change this paradigm in healthcare, Columbia Asia started its operations as an international private healthcare company in Malaysia in 1996.
Columbia Asia began in Malaysia with the acquisition of a medical facility in Miri, Sarawak, where its primary clients were from the oil and gas industry. In 1998, the owners built an extended care facility in Shah Alam, Selangor, as the healthcare industry had many acute care hospitals but no purposed built long-term care hospitals to serve a growing need in this segment. The following year, the company launched Columbia Asia Hospital – Seremban which offered multidisciplinary healthcare services to help meet the growing acute care needs in the state of Negri Sembilan. Today, there are 19 Columbia Asia hospitals across three countries in Asia, the other two countries being Vietnam and Indonesia. These hospitals are dedicated to offering optimum and affordable medical services to patients.With around 100 to 200 beds per medical facility, two to three-storey buildings for more efficient smoother patient workflow, and new medical technologies to decrease the level of invasive treatments, Columbia Asia has evolved to be a preferred choice of healthcare services for families and businesses.
Delivering a Wide Array of Medical Services
The original founders of the Columbia Asia Hospital were clear about what should be the core medical program in a Columbia Asia Hospital. The primary 5-core medical disciplines at Columbia Asia Hospitals are Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, Obstetrics & Gynecology, General Surgery & Orthopedics. As medical science evolved and medical technology advanced, Columbia Asia’s medical program was further enlarged. Cardiology, Urology, ENT, Gastroenterology, Ophthalmology, Rheumatology, Nephrology, and Neurology services were eventually included in its medical service list. Out of the 19 Columbia Asia hospitals, there are 13 Columbia Asia hospitals in Malaysia with the Tebrau facility in Johor Bahru being the most recently launched hospital.
In late 2019, the ownership of Columbia Asia hospitals changed from US-based investors to Malaysia’s homegrown conglomerate, Hong Leong Group, and Texas Pacific Group (TPG), a global private equity firm. Columbia Asia continued to evolve the breadth and depth of its medical services with fast-changing technologies to better serve the majority of the healthcare needs of the community. “Working together with our highly-trained doctors & nurses, we strive to facilitate our hospitals with the latest medical technology and skills. Behind this leading-edge, lies simplicity in the hospitals’ distinct architectural design. This allows us to give patients personalized care in a clean and comforting environment,” elucidates Kelvin Tan, the Chief Executive Officer of Columbia Asia-Southeast Asia.
Attributes that Differentiate Columbia Asia
While there are many factors that contributed towards the success of Columbia Asia, some core elements that played a crucial role are cost-effectiveness, a healthcare model design based on workflow efficiencies, a technology-driven proprietary healthcare information system, and a balanced and comprehensive medical program that effectively caters to approximately 90% of the communities’ healthcare needs. Another key aspect that makes it stand apart from the rest is its focus on minimizing excesses in delivering healthcare services which ultimately translates to more efficient healthcare cost for patients. In addition, its accessibility, clustering, and patient-centric setup also make it the preferred healthcare provider among families, corporates, and top insurers and TPAs. Located in populated residential areas, Columbia Asia hospitals make quality private healthcare more accessible to a significant majority. “Cluster strategies in large urban areas allow them to achieve operational efficiencies through a higher level of collaboration and synergies to provide comprehensive healthcare services,” states Kelvin.
Staying ahead of the Technology Curve
Today, the accessibility to new medical technologies is constantly changing the way patients can be better managed. Thus, leveraging cutting-edge technology, Columbia Asia hospital always strives to offer better patient-centric care. “More non-invasive procedures reduce the need for long hospital stay as the trauma of open surgeries is reduced for patients. Modern precision diagnostics help in effective patient outcomes. Patients are effectively treated and discharged to recuperate with their loved ones at home within the shortest time possible. The average length of stay at our hospital is approximately two days which helps minimize overall patient bills,” asserts Kelvin.
To further empower its patients, the healthcare organization offers telehealth services, making it especially suitable for those with long-term chronic medical conditions to continue their medications without the need to be physically present at the hospital. “A passion for making people better, implies a deep-rooted desire to give our professional best to our patients,” adds Kelvin.
Pursuing Excellence with Its Value-Driven Approach
Columbia Asia’s work culture is driven by a strong set of core values including customer-centricity, excellence, teamwork, integrity, care, and community involvement. It anticipates customer needs and strives to exceed their expectation while staying ever ready to serve and be of assistance to its patients, no matter how small the request, or how big the task is. Rooted in its patient-centric culture, it ensures delivering nothing but the best care to patients with the assistance of highly trained nurses , medical professionals and the latest state-of-the-art medical equipment based on advanced technologies. The dedicated team at Columbia Asia works together with mutual respect, honesty, and commitment to always do the right thing. Nurturing a culture of care for patients, their families, and each other, the team ensures that patients are made to feel assured and cared for, from registration to discharge. Moreover, the healthcare service provider also focuses on being involved in the life of the communities it serves by incorporating programs, classes, workshops, charity drives as well as health, fitness, and family events.
Creating a Roadmap for Better Services
Columbia Asia is in the midst of building another new hospital in Batu Kawan, Penang. Going forward, it plans to further widen its capabilities and add more complex disciplines such as oncology to its list of services. As kidney diseases are on the rise in Malaysia, it is launching two dialysis centers this year, in Tebrau and Klang.
Forging ahead, the company also intends to focus on telehealth while staying true to its vision of making quality private healthcare more accessible and effective for patients. “As we continue to evolve with medical advancements and persist to build on Columbia Asia’s philosophy and passion to serve, we look forward to being at the helm of private healthcare in the future,” concludes Kelvin.