National Medical Laboratory Week
April 26–May 2
National Medical Laboratory Week 2020 looked and felt different. Amid a pandemic, there was a spotlight shining on the laboratory profession. Keeping to the theme of “We Are Lab,” we shifted our celebration tools to be virtual, and we included information about your essential role in the pandemic. We also created the website wearelab.ca to showcase your many roles and help Canadians put faces to the heroes that are often unseen behind lab doors.
Lab Week was a success, despite needing to be reimagined with short notice. We began the week with a statement from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who formally recognized the week and highlighted your role in the fight against COVID-19; and other provincial and territorial health authorities shared Lab Week messages. Three national landmarks joined the celebration, with the Calgary Tower, the CN Tower and Niagara Falls each putting on a light show in honour of Lab Week.
The Canadian medical laboratory community came together to share the love of the lab and the pride of the profession. Our social media channels were overwhelmed with your advocate action. Our Lab Week posts on Facebook and Twitter were seen by more than 350,000 people.
The Indigo Lab Coat
When the second wave of the pandemic began to take shape in September and workloads in the lab hit new highs almost daily, we felt the profession could use something positive. We took the profession’s most recognizable symbol — the lab coat — and used it as an educational tool.
Printed on the coat in microscopic indigo type are the names of the 1.2 million lab tests done each day in labs across the country. The small print invites the public to take a closer look at the work done by medical laboratory professionals. We specifically chose indigo for the colour as it represents confidence, intelligence, ambition, and devotion — all characteristics of the hardworking lab professionals that you are.
The campaign included outdoor advertising and social media promotion, leading to the website, IndigoLabCoat.ca. We even sent a few coats to influential Canadians.
See the results of the campaign here: https://www.csmls.org/IndigoLabCoatSpotted
Social media allows us to reach people across the country – and even the world – every day. We capitalized on this instant reach to amplify the lab’s voice and raise awareness throughout 2020.
Our Facebook posts reached more than 4.7 million users, helping them see the value of your work and the Society. On Twitter, the CSMLS page was mentioned 913 times, and our posts were seen by more than 650, 000 users.
Our Facebook “Page Likes” surpassed 17,000 for the first time, increasing by 1,190 — that’s 3 new likes a day. CSMLS Twitter followers also hit a milestone, reaching almost 3,500 by the end of the year.
Thanks to your engagement, our online presence kept growing over 2020 — and with it, our ability to keep you informed of Society news and products, announce the latest advocacy initiatives, and educate the public on your vital role.