The death of Canada’s head of state
Together, we mourn the passing of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, and pay tribute to her remarkable lifetime of public service to Canada. Our facility flags will be flying at half-mast to honour her 70-year legacy. As this is the first time that we have witnessed the death of a monarch, we will follow the guidelines proposed by the Manual of Official Procedure of the Government of Canada.
Announcement: securing Canada’s plasma supply for immunoglobulins
On Sept. 7, 2022, Canadian Blood Services announced how we will bring greater security to the supply of immunoglobulins for patients in Canada. In keeping with the recommendations, we will continue to open new plasma donor centres and collect more plasma at blood donor centres as well as enter into an agreement with Grifols to accelerate plasma collection and bring manufacturing of immunoglobulins to Canada. This is a complex topic, and it is likely donors, volunteers and the public will approach employees with questions in the weeks and months to come. Visit Connect to learn more and use this toolkit to support you in having those conversations.
Sexual behaviour-based screening takes effect Sept. 11
Starting this Sunday, all donors — regardless of gender or sexual orientation — will be asked if they’ve had new or multiple sexual partners in the last three months under new sexual behaviour-based screening (SBBS) criteria. If they answer yes, they will then be asked if they’ve had anal sex with any of these partners. If they have, they will be required to wait three months from when they last had anal sex to donate. If they have not, and meet all other eligibility criteria, they will be able to move forward with their donation. To support this transition, all employees have access to specialized training in sex-positive conversations which focuses on removing shame and awkwardness from conversations around sexual behaviour. Visit Connect for the full details and watch on Connect TV and here in Your Digest for employee perspectives on this long-awaited change.
Send us your feedback on the latest town hall (recording now available)
During yesterday’s town hall, our CEO, Dr. Graham Sher, addressed a few important updates in his opening remarks. He provided information and responses to many questions around the recent plasma announcement. He also discussed the upcoming implementation of our new SBBS criteria and unveiled our new “Make All The Difference” creative strategy. In case you missed it, you can access the recording of the September 8 town hall on our employee portal or listen to the podcast on Connect on the Go. To improve future live events with our CEO, we ask you to please take a moment to provide us with your views by completing this anonymous three-minute survey by Friday, Sept. 16, at 8 p.m. ET. At any time, you can submit questions or feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org or submit anonymously using this form.
Question of the day
Will 100% of the plasma collected by Grifols remain in Canada?
Under the agreement signed earlier this week, both Canadian Blood Services and Grifols will collect plasma in Canada, which will be made into immunoglobulins by Grifols for patients in Canada. At first, manufacturing will occur at Grifols’ plant in the U.S. and then will transition to their plant in Montréal, sometime in 2026, when it is fully operational. Canadian Blood Services will purchase all (100 per cent) of these immunoglobulins from Grifols, exclusively for use in Canada. Purchasing medications from the global biologics industry is a common practice globally and has been part of the organization’s practice for more than two decades. The difference with this agreement is that immunoglobulins will be made in Canada, enabling an end-to-end supply chain within the country for the first time, and reducing reliance on global supplies of immunoglobulins.