Everyone has a story to tell regarding the moment when the covid-19 pandemic hit. In March 2020, we all remember what we were doing and how we felt. It was a defining moment. It was certainly for me as well. I took office as President & Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at the Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) based in Vancouver, British Columbia just a few weeks before the pandemic crisis hit. No time to adapt, no time to react. Before we could take stock of what was happening, it was in our face and so was a new reality. As we all experienced it, the pandemic hit like a ton of bricks and the world as we knew it collapsed overnight. Being at the helm of a provincial health agency was not an easy challenge in such a context, and especially so given that I had just joined PHSA.
But inasmuch as it proved to be stressful and difficult in so many different ways, it was also an amazing experience. Can you imagine the intensity, the unknown surrounding everything we did, the battles to secure the necessary supplies such as the PPEs (personal protection equipment), the mobilization to fight back, the team efforts to make progress, the creative use of all kinds of resources to push forward and design solutions, the information management pressures to keep abreast of the new emerging science and relay it to all stakeholders and society? It was all-hands on deck; day and night. What an experience it was. I was recently invited to join a podcast series in order to share a little bit of that experience; of the particular viewpoint I have had the privilege of having for the first two waves of the pandemic as CEO at the PHSA.
In the meantime, may you be well, may you be happy.