Canadian Blood Services Continues to Save Lives During the Pandemic

Oct 14, 2021

The pandemic brought what felt like insurmountable challenges to industries worldwide. Couriers delivering temperature-sensitive, life-saving blood stem cells to patients across the globe were no exception. As travel and border restrictions heightened, flights were cancelled. This made it especially challenging to transport blood stem cells to patients waiting for a life-saving transplant. 
 
As the pandemic took hold in Canada, Gail Morris, Manager of Donor Services for the Canadian Blood Services Stem Cell Registry, quickly assembled a network of colleagues who orchestrate the transport of blood stem cells. Her team worked closely with federal officials to ensure that donations scheduled to arrive in the coming weeks would make it safely to each patient’s bedside. 
 
The barriers Morris’s team faced became more complex as the pandemic and travel restrictions evolved. The team had to navigate quarantine guidelines, consider the health of volunteer couriers, engage professional couriers trained in biomedical transport, obtain exemption letters for couriers and work around COVID-19 testing requirements in Canada.
 
Despite the challenges, Morris and the team at Canadian Blood Services were able to successfully transport hundreds of blood stem cell donations around the globe and continue to save lives. Learn more about how Canadian Blood Services made it happen at https://www.blood.ca/en/stories/stem-cells-without-borders.

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