Employee is first in St. John’s to donate following SBBS implementation
Since the new sexual behaviour-based screening (SBBS) criteria changed almost two short weeks ago, some employees who are now eligible to donate have done so at their local donor centres. In 1993, Gord Skiffington self-deferred after being a regular blood donor for a few years. The “men who have sex with men” or MSM policy at the time meant that he was not eligible to donate. As a St. John’s, N.L. donor relations recruiter, Gord was elated when the change happened, and he became able to donate again. Gord was the first member of the 2SLGBTQIA+ community to donate in St. John’s under the new policy. “The change was a long time coming, but now, after 22 years working in donor recruitment, I can once again walk the talk,” he says proudly. Visit Connect to read Gord’s story.
Hurricane Fiona’s impact in the Atlantic region
As many of you have seen in the news, there is a hurricane watch currently in effect in the Atlantic region, which may impact many of our employees, donors and volunteers in N.S., P.E.I., N.B and N.L. Our operations and collections teams have been preparing for possible closures and the potential loss of power next week. While some donation events have already been postponed or cancelled, we will manage blood inventory by leveraging our national reserves, if needed, to ensure hospital and patient needs are met. Our thoughts are with our colleagues in the affected areas and we are grateful for emergency personnel and crews who are preparing for the anticipated issues and solutions. Local emergency response teams are monitoring the situation closely. The NS/PEI and NB storm lines will be updated if there are any interruptions to operations on Monday. Nova Scotia/PEI employees can call 902-480-5755 and New Brunswick employees can call 506-648-5022.
New CEO blog post shares learnings from a recent conference in South Africa
Our CEO, Dr. Graham Sher recently attended a conference in Durban, South Africa where he delivered a series of keynote talks in the town he used to vacation in as a child. “I guess it is close to 45 years since I was last in Durban,” he writes. “On some levels, not much had changed at all. At the same time, it felt somewhat foreign and strange. I was attending a medical convention as an invited dignitary, not a kid on summer break. And, perhaps most strikingly, I was engaging with a side of South Africa I had never truly experienced: the complex, fascinating, dynamic and challenging world of health care, business and geopolitics of post-Apartheid South Africa.” Read more on Connect about the topics Graham covered at the conference, and the inspiring learnings he took with him.
Question of the day
What will happen to Grifols’ clinics in the future? Will they eventually close to make way for Canadian Blood Services’ clinics?
The length of the initial term of the agreement is 15 years. Grifols cannot operate in Canada outside of this agreement. Before the term ends, Canadian Blood Services will reassess Canada’s sufficiency needs for immunoglobulins and determine next steps to ensure patients’ needs continue to be met long term.