oneVCH COVID-19 Bulletin
September 30, 2020
The bulletins will be distributed on Mondays and Wednesdays starting this weekPast bulletins are available on the COVID-19 section of our VCH staff intranet.
If you receive a media inquiry, please contact our Public Affairs team immediately for support. Our media line is 604-202-2012 or email
  • There were 125 new cases of COVID-19 in B.C. today.
  • Total of 9,138 cases in the province and 1,284 active cases
    • Vancouver Coastal Health: 3,340
    • Fraser: 4,658
    • Interior Health: 533
    • Vancouver Island: 208
    • Northern Health: 312
    • 87 people who are from outside of Canada, but currently in B.C.
  • 72 hospitalized 
  • 21 currently admitted to ICU
  • 7,591 recovered
  • 234 confirmed deaths
Click here to see more updates on the BC COVID-19 Dashboard

Miss Tuesday's town hall? Watch it here!

To watch the virtual town hall, please click on the link below.
VCH staff show support for Orange Shirt Day

Visit VCH News to learn more about Orange Shirt Day
Don’t miss the next Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Listening and Learning session

Join us for part two of our Listening and Learning series, An Anti-Racism Mindset: Addressing Racism at the Individual and Social Level, on Wednesday, October 7 from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Building on the first foundational session (Literacy and Foundations), we will provide a forum for frank conversation with select speakers regarding their personal experiences with race discrimination and racism, and discuss what can be done to address racism. Don’t miss out on this engaging and thought-provoking discussion!

Add the webcast details to your calendar using this link. Download calendar invite

Missed the last two sessions? You can watch the series anytime using the same webcast link

NEW! DEI tools and resources are now available on our DEI intranet page. This is just the beginning of building an extensive self-serve resource library, so check back often for the latest information.

If you have any questions or feedback, please email
Fall surge hand hygiene safety reminders 

As we head into the fall surge, we’d like to share tips to help keep you, your colleagues and patients safe.
Staff etiquette and physical distancing

To reduce COVID-19 transmission:
  • Please do not come to work if you are exhibiting any COVID-19 symptoms.
  • Team meetings and in-person interactions should be replaced with virtual options as much as possible.
  • Maintain two-metre physical distancing as much as possible.  
  • Limit the exchange of papers, shared pens and other office equipment.
  • Please do not share food, snacks or drinks.
Your health and safety is one our top priorities. Visit the VCH IPAC website for full guidelines on PPE, hand hygiene, dress code, and more.
Q&A: Workplace

Q: I'm worried about exposure at work and don't want to come in. What can I do?

​​It is safe to come to work. VCH is taking extra precautions to ensure the safety of our staff including enhanced cleaning practices, early identification of cases, prompt isolation, testing and monitoring, executing new infection prevention and control practices and restricting visitors to essential visits only.

Public Health and Occupational Health will be notified if staff exposure is suspected and they will advise you on next steps including isolation and testing (if required).

If you still have concerns, please speak with your manager. For additional support, you can also call Employee Wellness/EFAP at 1-800-505-4929 for confidential counselling services or wellness tips. Watch for more information on anxiety and stress reduction tips for staff.​​
Attention all VCH medical staff: Participate in our diversity survey

VCH and the VCH Physicians Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee would like to invite you to participate in an anonymous diversity survey. Why? Evidence indicates that when more equity and diversity in health care is achieved, medical staff experience greater career satisfaction, health and wellness, and a sense of solidarity with their profession while patients experience improved care and a more responsive and adaptable health care system.
The diversity survey aims to explore the diversity profile within our medical staff population, establish a baseline to build on and learn how to better support VCH medical staff. The collected information will help inform future policies, practices and interventions to improve diversity, equity and inclusion at VCH. 
The online survey will take no more than five to 10 minutes to complete, is voluntary and anonymous - no personal identifiable information is being collected.
There will be a draw each week for $25 coffee gift cards for those who complete the survey and enter the draw!  We hope to hear from all of you.

Take the survey here. 
Congratulations to our high five contest winners from Vancouver Community Services!

As part of VCH's high five contest, a high-fiver and their recipient will be selected each week to win a $25 gift card for helping to spread joy across the organization. This week, we are shining the spotlight on Rosa Fernandes and Morva Gowans, who work together at Vancouver Community Services.  Rosa sent Morva a high five for being a wonderful manager and mentor, and for being so welcoming to Rosa as a new employee at VCH!

Read the full story here at VCH News. 
Regional COVID-19 education impact survey

In March 2020, a Regional COVID-19 Education Working Group was created to ensure the development of a regional standardized, evidence-based approach to COVID-19 education at VCH, focusing on the following areas: Acute, Community, Ambulatory and Long Term Care.
As of July 29, more than 17,000 staff have been reached with COVID-19 Education, through the following methods:
1. Face-to-face: In-person education provided by someone from the Department of Quality and Patient Safety, Infection Prevention and Control, Professional Practice and /or Site, Unit or Care Home Educators and Leadership.
2. Train-the-trainer: Virtual and in-person education provided at Paetzold Auditorium by Infection Prevention and Control (IPAC) team.
3. Online-Education: Online modules dedicated to COVID-19 in the Learning HUB Platform and Online education in specific practice areas.
4. Coffee Chat with IPAC: Weekly virtual sessions through WebEx platform provided by IPAC Practitioners and Physicians, and the recorded YouTube Sessions on the IPAC Website.
The COVID-19 Regional Clinical Education Working Group is evaluating the impact and effectiveness of the COVID-19 education session(s) via an online survey. Your feedback is very important and will help the Working Group identify the most effective education methods, make improvements and address educational gaps.
Please find the online survey in the following link:
The survey will be available until September 30, 2020 and your responses will remain completely anonymous.
If you have any questions, please contact Arianna Cruz (

The curious relationship between habits and freedom

Drop by drop is the water pot filled. – Buddha

My father used to tell me, “Son, life is nothing but habit.” As we get older, we increasingly realize that there is more than just a degree of truth in such statements. Of course there are good habits and bad habits. Good habits can be difficult to maintain in our fast paced modern lifestyle, but when one adds on a pandemic the disruption to such habits can become even more significant.

The above is true of Spiritual habits as much as any other kind of habit. After months of not gathering like we once did weekly in our congregational sacred spaces after months of not seeing our imam, priest, rabbi, sensei, Elder, pastor or soul friends  after months of missing rituals of repenting, cleansing, dedicating, communing, blessing. After experiencing so much spiritual disruption, we may understandably have fallen out of spiritual habits like prayer, meditation and the reading of sacred texts. It is after all, easier to fall out of good habits than to establish them in the first place.

So, what are we to do? Wherein lies motivation strong enough to overcome our inertia? How can we focus once again on what we can do, rather than focusing on what we are missing? How do we stop making excuses for losing our good habits?

The answer may lie in how we see habits in relation to freedom. Personally, I deeply value my liberty. So, if I think I can claw back some freedom from the realms of necessity I get a little excited. You see, there are habits that we instill in ourselves and habits instilled in us by others. In a technological age of subtle manipulation by advertisers, we are all in danger of being trained in habits not of our own conscious choosing.

In today’s technological context, it is an act of freedom to assert oneself against such manipulation. Through exercising old spiritual habits like, prayer, meditation, the reading of sacred texts, doing intentional acts of kindness and confessing our faults, we can regain our ability to pull our own strings. In doing so, we are instilling our own habits rather than having an internet advertising algorithm establishing them for us. Such simple acts of freedom are at least fully our own. In doing them, we are programming ourselves. We are breaking the cycle of cause and effect. As such, they are a bold statement of how we will not let the pandemic or technology take away our inner freedom, even when our outer freedoms have been greatly reduced.

So, if you are feeling like you have lost something of the power you used to get from either communal or individual spiritual habits, perhaps some reflection on how good habits can preserve our freedom may help. Too often we think of habits even positive ones, as somehow limiting our freedom when in truth they are ironically acts of freedom committed by creatures who recognize that transcending their own limitations only comes through acknowledging the limits of human willpower. It is when we acknowledge the limits of our willpower that we discover the need to program ourselves, instead of letting other forces program us. Re-taking the steering wheel of our lives like this, benefits not only ourselves, but everyone.

Your net worth to the world is usually determined by what remains after your bad habits are subtracted from your good ones. Benjamin Franklin

Written by Doug Longstaffe, Profession Leader, Spiritual Care & Multifaith Services
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