An important update on masks at Canadian Blood Services sites
As our knowledge of the COVID-19 pandemic evolves, it is necessary that we do everything possible to protect the continuity of our essential operations, safeguard our teams and limit the risk of community spread. Earlier today, you received an email from our CEO outlining new requirements with respect to masks coming into effect on Thursday, July 16:
- In operational environments, including testing, distribution production and logistics, surgical masks will be mandatory at all times. This decision was made with an abundance of caution given the essential nature of the work involved and challenges with maintaining physical distancing.
- In collections environments, including permanent and mobile donor centres, surgical masks will continue to be mandatory. This measure will now extend to before and after donors arrive, including logistics teams who are involved in setting up and taking down mobile events.
- In administrative environments, such as office buildings and common areas, cloth masks will be mandatory at all times, except when an employee is alone at their workstation. Employees are welcome to use their own mask, or one that is provided from our cloth mask inventory. A cloth mask is the minimum requirement for administrative environments, but if an employee will be working in both operational and administrative environments on the same day, they can wear a surgical mask in both environments.
We understand that for many of you, especially our dedicated teams on the frontlines, wearing a mask at all times can be uncomfortable. Your dedication and adaptability to come into work each day in our current climate with a shared goal of getting lifesaving blood products to patients is truly commendable.
To help you familiarize yourself with the new requirements, we’ve created a detailed FAQ available now on your COVID-19 employee portal. We also encourage you to speak with your managers/supervisor if you have questions about how this affects you.
Help us reach new COVID-19 convalescent plasma donors:
We’ve been collecting COVID-19 convalescent plasma as part of Health Canada-approved clinical trials since April. To date, 135 individuals have donated their convalescent plasma (with 38 more scheduled to donate in the next couple weeks) and more than 1,600 other potential donors are registered.
We’ve collected 442 units from those individuals who have already participated. This is a great start, but we need your help to keep meeting the needs of hospitals and patients participating in the clinical trials.
At this time, we are specifically looking for donors who:
- Meet the plasma donor eligibility criteria
- Are under the age of 67
- Have been confirmed positive for COVID-19 by laboratory test
- Have since fully recovered from the virus
- Have been symptom free for at least 28 days
Help us spread the word through your social networks to encourage eligible individuals to sign-up as a potential convalescent plasma donor and contribute to the clinical trials. To make this easy, we’ve developed a toolkit with everything you need to inspire those around you to take part in determining whether convalescent plasma is a safe and effective treatment for patients with COVID-19. Learn more on blood.ca/convalescentplasma.
Question of the day: A diversity and inclusion assessment was conducted three years ago. What was the outcome of the initial assessment? If this didn’t move the needle for us, why conduct another assessment?
The diversity and inclusion assessment that was conducted years ago wasn’t intensive enough and didn’t give us enough data to understand the needs of employees. We also did not invest the time or resources that we should have into the recommendations from that assessment and that’s on us.
We’re committed to moving forward in a committed way. We hope that you will all contribute to the ongoing assessment because each and every one of your voices matters, and we promise you that we’ll do better. To complete the survey or schedule an interview with Feminuity go to Connect.
About the daily digest
This daily digest will highlight the latest policy and employee support measures, resources to help you manage our new reality and original content like articles and videos to remind us that what we do matters. Things are moving quickly, so you can expect to hear from us daily. No access to email? No problem — all this information and more can be found on blood.ca/employees from any device, no login required.
Click here to read past editions of the daily digest.
Have questions? Check out blood.ca/employees or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.