Moving with the time

2022 – a year in which the world lurched from one crisis to the next: the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine, the unstable financial markets, inflation and, lastly, the looming energy crisis. Despite all this, we managed to find our way back to a new “normal”. We never lost sight of our vision and remained flexible – moving with the times – and can look back on a solid year marked by achievements in many areas.

Swiss Transfusion SRC is an autonomous organisation within the Swiss Red Cross that is structured as a non-profit-making company limited by shares (gemeinnützige Aktiengesellschaft). The majority of its shares are owned by the SRC, and the eleven regional blood transfusion services (RBSD) hold 49%. Swiss Transfusion SRC is responsible for managing the blood supply on behalf of the SRC and holds a mandate from the Swiss Government to manage the registry of blood stem cell donors. No funding is provided for expanding the registry, however. Swiss Transfusion SRC has to rely on monetary donations to meet those costs.

What lies behind our strategic moves

Regular consultations with the regional blood transfusion services (RBSD) form the key pillar of the work of the division dedicated to securing the national blood supply. In addition to our operational activities, we monitor current and upcoming trends in the economic environment (skilled labour shortage, digitalisation, etc.), as well as in the fields of medical research and development. To this end, we engage in a regular exchange with partner organisations, sharing expertise and benefiting from know-how and synergies.

In the area of blood stem cell donation, the anonymised donor data from the registry of blood stem cell donors is an important source of information for new clinical uses in the field of cellular therapies and in university research. We welcome the creation of a national centre of expertise for data management and scientific analyses to concentrate these strengths. The task now will be to work with Swiss Blood Stem Cell Transplantation and Cellular Therapy (SBST) to work out how we can secure the specialised skills (statistics, clinical knowledge etc.) and funding for the medium and long term.

Swiss Transfusion SRC Staff

Our organisation showed itself to be stable from a human resources standpoint in 2022. It was thanks to great dedication on the part of the staff that the challenges the organisation faced both on the operational side and in connection with the relocation of our offices were successfully overcome. The return to the workplace after the removal of the Covid-19 restrictions of the previous year went smoothly, although staff members also use and appreciate the possibilities to work from home. The move from the small-cell offices spread over five stories to the new premises, with a modern workplace design and desk sharing, went off without a hitch thanks to the active efforts of the entire staff, the assistance of competent external partners and comprehensive change management. There is a steady development and consolidation of our organisational culture towards a more flexible and closer cooperation across team and departmental boundaries.

Key HR metrics for 2022

Number of employees (as of 31 Dec. 22): 63 permanent employees (5 more than in 2021), corresponding to a total of 47.9 FTE (full-time equivalent) (a 4.8 FTE increase). This number includes two commercial apprentices (one first-year, one third-year). Around 80 per cent of all employees worked on a part-time basis; the average employee FTE was 0.76. Two fixed-term/temporary employees were also engaged.

Voluntary turnover rate: At 8.9 per cent, the voluntary turnover rate is within the range associated with healthy workforce renewal (8–12 per cent, source: weka, 2021 survey). The 2021 rate was 12.4 per cent, thus a noticeable decrease in the number of personnel changes can be reported for 2022.

Absence rate: Calculated as a percentage of regular working hours, the total hours of absence due to illness/accidents/medical appointments amounted to 2.5 per cent in 2022 (down 0.2 per cent compared to 2021). This figure is distinctly below the Swiss average for health-related absences, which is 3.2 per cent (source: Federal Statistical Office, 2021 survey).

Employee satisfaction: An employee satisfaction survey (Ambiometer) is conducted at two-year intervals. The next formal employee satisfaction survey will be carried out in the spring of 2023, so that its results can reflect, among other things, the level of satisfaction with the new working situation six months after the relocation. The low turnover rate in the year under report suggests that employee satisfaction is holding steady at a good level.

Swiss Transfusion SRC management

There was a change in the management team in 2022, with a new appointment to the position of Chief Medical Officer SBSC. Dr. med. Grazia Nicoloso de Faveri retired, after 21 years, and was replaced by Dr. med. Gayathri Nair. Dr Nair had been senior physician with increased responsibility in the area of stem cell transplantation / cellular therapies in the Department of Medical Oncology and Haematology of the Clinic of University Hospital Zurich and had been active on the Board of Swiss Transfusion SRC since 2017.

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“Creating a sense of security and confidence in uncertain times, while never losing sight of the defined objectives. This is what made it possible last year, as in other years, for the board, the staff and partner organisations to contribute on a daily basis towards every patient receiving the right donation at the right time.”

From the left: Soraya Amar, Oliver Kürsteiner, Anita Tschaggelar, Rahel Vaterlaus, Bernhard Wegmüller, Franziska Kellenberger, Felix Bussmann, Gayathri Nair

Swiss Transfusion SRC Board of Directors

There was a change on the Board in 2022, with PD Dr. med. Sabine Gerull replacing Dr. med. Gayathri Nair.

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