10 September 2014 | News | By BioSpectrum Bureau
Columbia Asia opened four new hospitals in Indonesia and India
Singapore: US-based Columbia Pacific Management, provider of hospital systems, plans to invest USD150 million to expand its network to 34 hospitals and one clinic by 2018 in south east Asia and India.
Columbia Pacific Management and its investment partners created the Columbia Asia hospital system with a business model focused on serving Asia's rapidly growing middle class with modern and efficient multispecialty hospitals located close to where patients live and work.
Columbia Asia opened four new hospitals in the last few months in Indonesia and India and has around 8,000 employees serving more than 2 million patients a year in 26 hospitals and one clinic in Malaysia, India, Indonesia and Vietnam.
"When we began opening hospitals, virtually all of the care was paid for directly by the patients but in countries like Malaysia, our hospitals have benefitted from the rapid growth of health insurance to a point where today nearly 70 percent of our patients have coverage," said Mr Nate McLemore, managing director, Columbia Pacific Management. "It is a major shift, and by focusing on delivering value through high-quality care at affordable prices we are uniquely positioned to serve this newly insured population."
Columbia Asia's strategy is to create clusters of hospitals in large urban areas. This allows the firm to achieve operational and brand leverage across the market in each large city. Around the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur, for example, the company has five hospitals, a sixth to open in 2016 and a seventh to open in 2017.
Another defining element to the Columbia Asia network is that all the hospitals are built on a single basic design, which saves on development costs, and with a standardized quality of care across all facilities.
"No other healthcare provider in Asia has hospitals in as many countries operating under a single brand," said Mr Daniel R Baty, the founder of Columbia Pacific Management, who conceived and designed the Columbia Asia hospital system more than 20 years ago. "We're unique in the marketplace because all our hospitals operate under the same banner and the same standard of care.
"Columbia Asia began with an idea and then a single hospital in Malaysia that opened in 1994," Mr Baty said. "We took our time and refined our healthcare model to meet the specific needs of the growing middle class in Southeast Asia and India before we began building out the system. Over the last decade we have seen steady and dramatic growth, along with the growth of the middle class and the expansion of insurance coverage in this region."