Celebrating the women of Canadian Blood Services: Yesterday was International Women’s Day, with a theme of Choose to Challenge. Our organization has no shortage of incredible women who bring their skills and dedication to work with them each and every day. We reached out across the country to ask some of them what International Women’s Day means to them and how raising awareness of gender equity in the workplace is critical. Read more on blood.ca/stories
Winter Wellness Challenge — getting quality sleep: Getting consistent, high-quality sleep allows for your body and mind to recuperate from the day’s activities. It helps boost immune function, improve heart health, steady blood sugar levels, increase energy and decrease stress. If you’ve noticed your sleeping patterns have changed over the past year, you’re not alone. Which is why week four of the Winter Wellness Challenge is all about creating successful habits to promote restful and restorative slumber. Koreena Gallant, wellness champion, brand ambassador and donor centre supervisor in Saskatoon, Sask. found she was more tired as the pandemic dragged on and had to make some adjustments to her bed-time routine. Learn how you can incorporate her tips for better rest on Connect.
New federal funding to support cancer cell therapy research: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently announced more than $518 million in research infrastructure support through the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI). One of the 102 project recipients was ExCELLirate Canada, a group of institutions and researchers which includes Canadian Blood Services. Our director of stem cells, Dr. Heidi Elmoazzen, is part of the ExCELLirate Canada team that coordinates the national research platform for new cancer cell therapies. “Canadian Blood Services is proud to be participating in this exciting initiative to develop lifesaving cellular therapies for Canadian patients,” says Dr. Elmoazzen. “As an organization, we are uniquely positioned to leverage our safe handling of cell products, supply chain and distribution across Canada to successfully deliver all research objectives.” Learn more about our research on blood.ca.
FIXED — link to Bell Let’s Talk Day outstanding questions: In last Friday’s digest, we provided a link to access answers to questions we were unable to get to during the Bell Let’s Talk Day live events. We noticed after the fact that some employees were having issues accessing it. This issue has now been resolved and all employees should be able to access the outstanding questions without any trouble. Thank you for your patience while we worked to resolve this issue. Head over to the Workplace Mental Health page on Connect to find live recordings of the events, answers to your questions around burnout, supporting others and more; and get information on resources available to support your mental health and well-being.
Keep calm and drive on: Based at Oak Centre in Vancouver, Kevin Tourond has driven safely for decades on streets and highways around the B.C. and Yukon region. No two trips are ever the same and Kevin has consistently ensured blood and blood products reach their destination to help patients in need. Kevin is being recognized this year for 30 years of safe driving. He is one of only four elite drivers so far at our organization to have achieved this distinction and has maintained an outstanding record of safe, professional and collision-free driving. When asked to offer guidance to new drivers, Kevin emphasizes safety which is an important priority of Canadian Blood Services. “Don’t be in a rush because that’s when you start taking risks and the odds of having an accident increase,” he says of the advice he provides. Learn more about how Kevin has been supporting patients for almost 40 years on Connect.
Question of the day: Why are we changing the self-isolation period for employees who have tested positive for COVID-19 from 14 days to 10–14 days before they can return to work?
We are updating the minimum isolation period to a range of 10–14 days for employees who are off work following a positive COVID-19 test. This change brings our policy in line with local public health guidance.
It’s important to keep in mind that the exact duration of time away from work will vary case-by-case and will depend on information the employee is given by their local public health unit, information provided by a medical practitioner and current symptoms and progression of symptoms.
If an employee is notified by public health that they have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, the employee will likely be asked to self-isolate for 10–14 days, even in the event of a negative test result.
Once eligible to return to work, EHS (firstname.lastname@example.org) will help ensure employees do not experience issues passing through wellness checkpoints.
Our teams will use local public health recommendations as a minimum to determine when it is appropriate and safe for an employee to return to work. This allows us to assess each case individually and provide a more nuanced approach, while also reducing risk to employees.
Local public health guidelines continue to evolve and are based on the growing knowledge of COVID-19 and its infection period. By aligning with local public health recommendations, we will be better placed to limit risk and balance employee and operational needs and expectations.
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This 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. No access to email? No problem — all this information and more can be found on blood.ca/employees from any device, no login required.
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