SEIU-West member Carla works in an urban hospital as a Medical Lab Tech (MLT), specifically in hematology. She manages coagulation therapy and analyzes blood counts for patients with leukemia, gastrointestinal bleeds, heart attacks, and monitors patients during surgeries.

Carla's life and job were busy before COVID-19 hit and both have just gotten busier over the past year. Rural hospitals from across the province send in COVID samples to be processed and analyzed. The pressure of knowing someone is waiting on results as the samples stack up has been draining. Her team is doing their best in these circumstances, but the daily worry of whether they themselves catch COVID, or bring it home to their loved ones only adds anxiety to an already stressed work environment. Like so many health care workers, MLTs patiently await their vaccine and hope the virus numbers go down soon. She’s watched her coworkers exit the system over the past year, likely in part to the anxiety of COVID and the stress it’s added to the field.

One of Carla’s favorite memories this winter was when she left work after a night shift knowing that there were COVID samples that had yet to be processed and when she returned the next day they were caught up. It took a snow storm to assist in getting through the backlog.

Carla would love to send a message to thank everyone that has assisted us to limit transmission by using masks and sanitizer, and limiting themselves to essential travel and needs.

We are proud to send a message back to everyone on Carla’s team during National Medical Laboratory Week thanking all who work in our provincial lab services for their incredible dedication and work to help diagnose and protect everyone across the province.