Your Digest will be published on Tuesday only this week due to the statutory day of remembrance,
National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, on Friday, Sept. 30.
Hurricane Fiona impacts on Atlantic region operations
As many of you know, our colleagues in the Atlantic region faced a challenging weekend as Hurricane Fiona made landfall in certain areas of each of the four provinces, with some being worse hit than others. There is a strong community of support that exists in the region and our east coast colleagues have felt the comfort of our good thoughts and well wishes from across the country. As of today, many locations have had power restored, including all of our permanent clinics and business is returning to normal. However, because of significant clean-up efforts across P.E.I., the centre in Charlottetown remains closed today, Tuesday, Sept. 27. To make up for the closures over the weekend, donors are being contacted and asked to honour their appointments if they’re able or to reschedule if they’re unable to make it.
New creative strategy “Make All The Difference” launches
Yesterday, on Sept. 26, we launched our new national, integrated, multi-product creative strategy, “Make All The Difference.” Rooted in stories showing the ripple effect of donation, this strategy will guide our marketing and communications efforts over the next three to five years. From frontline engagement with donors to sharing stories of connection with our community, we all have a role to play to bring “Make All The Difference” to life in a meaningful way. Check out Connect to read about Lee, a blood recipient and aspiring Olympian.
Meaningful ways to mark the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation
Each Sept. 30, Canadian Blood Services observes the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. This federal statutory day of remembrance, now in its second year, honours the survivors of residential schools and the children who never made it home, as well as their families and communities. It is also a designated paid holiday for Canadian Blood Services employees in all provinces. Frontline employees scheduled to work will be paid according to their collective agreement and terms and conditions of employment. Importantly, it’s a day for Indigenous peoples to take the time needed to nurture themselves and for non-Indigenous people to do the work required for reconciliation. What reconciliation means and what each of us can do to advance it will be different for everyone, but there is a role we can all play. Visit Connect to learn about ways you can engage in truth and reconciliation this week and going forward.
Manulife LTD ‘premium holiday’ extended to March 2023
Earlier this year, employees who have Manulife extended health-care benefits were notified of a few changes as part of the annual benefits renewal process. Part of those changes included a negotiated decrease of five per cent for LTD premiums with a $0.01 ‘premium holiday’ until the end of September 2022. This ‘premium holiday’ is now being extended to March 26, 2023. Regular deductions for LTD premiums will now resume on the April 14, 2023 pay. Please note: the LTD premium rate holiday does not impact unionized employees in B.C. Visit Connect for more information on the benefit rate changes.
Reminder: Service awards are happening next week, October 3–7
Next week, our service awards will feature both in-person and virtual celebrations. This year, we thank close to 480 employees who have been with the organization anywhere from five to 45 years for making all the difference. Local, in-person celebrations are being planned by our employee appreciation working groups (you will have received an invite to your site celebration via email) and vice-presidents will be hosting virtual divisional calls throughout the month. Visit Connect to read more and see the list of our milestone employees for 2022.
Question of the day
How will Grifols be able to maintain the standard of donor care that our donor centres provide? Are they concerned with Canadians’ health or shareholder profit?
Health Canada is the regulator of blood and blood products in Canada, including plasma and medications made from plasma. All donor centres in Canada, including Grifols’ donor centres and their manufacturing plant in Montreal, must obtain a license from Health Canada to operate, and must undergo regular inspections, like we do, to ensure compliance with federal legislation.
Health Canada permits donors in Canada to give up to 104 plasma donations per year, and commercial collectors operating in Canada already follow this practice. Canadian Blood Services has maintained a limit of 52 plasma donations per year because we operate a non-remunerated collections model. Doubling the number of donations per year would be a significant increase in commitment for plasma donors who are not paid for their time.
The commercial plasma industry today is highly vigilant and has many layers of safety built in to protect patients from known infectious agents and emerging pathogens. For decades, plasma-derived medications, such as immunoglobulins, have been recognized as extremely safe by regulators, the global biologics industry, blood systems worldwide and, most importantly, the patients and clinicians who use them.