Kolb was extremely fortunate to be retained by Claudia Z. Lee for one of his first consulting engagements. Claudia, who was then the Director of Cancer Services of a hospital, went on to become one of the premier consultants to breast centers in the US. Over the years Claudia has been the source of many lessons, a great editor, and the teacher of the most important lesson in healthcare — that excellence is a foundation that cannot be compromised in any aspect of a breast center. Although she is now officially "retired", Claudia continues to inspire and be a compass in this practice. "What would Claudia think?", is a part of our DNA.
Maintaining Excellence in a Chaotic Economic Environment
Recognizing that patient navigation, psychosocial services, interdisciplinary conferences, and much of the other important work involved in breast programs provided minimal or no direct reimbursement, Kolb realized that breast centers and programs would be "targets" for cost cutting or elimination with downturns in the economy or even on changes in senior administration. How could centers position to withstand pressures that would normally diminish service and clinical excellence?
Creating Action from Passion
Sharing the passion of his clients for excellence in patient care, but using his business skills, Kolb was able to gain a perspective of the interrelationship of the services delivered in the continuum of breast care from both the clinical and economic sides of care. An early assertion of Kolb was that "breast programs cannot always return a positive bottom line, but they must always be economically effective if they are to be sustainable." We believe that this philosophy becomes increasingly more important as the Nation's attention turns to the control of healthcare costs. It is interesting, and illustrative of the magnitude of the challenge today, to note that in the years that have elapsed since Kolb began his consulting career, annual healthcare costs in the US have more than doubled, from under $1.3 billion to over $2.8 billion.
Our Commitment to You
We are committed to the proposition that economic effectiveness need not be achieved by sacrificing quality, and that the passion that we share for breast care can be used as an effective tool for cost effective quality. In fact, we have found that the creative application of proven business principles within the context of the center of excellence can actually server to improve both clinical quality and the patient experience in virtually all instances.