SUPPORT HEALTH CARE WORKERS WITH OUR PAY IT FORWARD PROGRAM

progress notes


Pulse, Barbie & In Charge - A Perfect Match 💓

Pulse, Barbie & In Charge - A Perfect Match 💓

 

Barbie has proven to be THE biggest debut ever for a film directed by a woman after earning a reported $162 million during its opening weekend! Wow.


I had been waiting and waiting to see this movie with my three teenage girls! Of course we dressed up, just like the rest of the moviegoers, fully embracing and creating an immersive experience earlier this week. And it did NOT disappoint. If you haven’t gone, go.

Even if you don’t like pink!

I wore my new formation scrubs in Pulse Pink - which ironically are being released now, at the same time as Barbie!

Here I am with my girls going into the movie:


Pink is a colour that many people have struggled with for a long time. When I was little, it was known that “pink is for girls, blue is for boys” - so I avoided pink, even though I kind of liked the colour. I was known as a ‘Tom Boy’, so I was not about to be pigeon-holed as another girl-who-likes-pink!

Now, I actually love the colour pink and what it means to me and those around me. To me, pink represents unconditional love, which is something that those in health care understand deeply.

It’s unapologetic, it doesn’t waver, and it boldly stands for what and whom we believe in.

Pulse Pink is here to embody that.

Pink now also represents strength, which has been a slow shift over the years. In a way, this also reflects some progress for women as well, as pink is traditionally “girly”.

For those who aren’t aware, I’m a physician, but also an artist. I try to sew in my studio as often as I can. I created this “mini” quilt for a call for entries. (I normally create 8 ft x 8 ft abstract modern quilt pieces). It still speaks to me, and how the world perceives women.

My quilt was chosen to be featured in the publication, here was my artist’s statement:

In Charge Quilt
Which do you want to be seen as?
In Charge, or, you Charge In.
There is a subtle difference, I feel, especially for women, which is why I chose these colours.
Pink for the traditional female, and orange is often seen as a colour of stepping into and owning our vulnerabilities and in doing so healing.


Times have certainly changed since my training days when I’d be one of three women at a cardiovascular surgery conference of hundreds.


I left “Charge” unquilted as it is imperfect. I feel we are all trying to figure this out - maybe you already have - but for myself, every day I am striving to be #incharge 💗


As you step into your Pulse Pink scrubs, remember that you are not just wearing a colour; you are embodying the spirit of empowerment, love, and authenticity. And, you are In Charge.


When Greta Gerwig was asked by People Magazine how she dealt with right-wing conservatives who expressed their disapproval for the film by declaring it “woke” and threatening to burn their Barbies, she said, “Certainly, there’s a lot of passion. My hope for the movie is that it’s an invitation for everybody to be part of the party and let go of the things that aren’t necessarily serving us as either women or men. I hope that in all of that passion, if they see it or engage with it, it can give them some of the relief that it gave other people.”


Pulse Pink is a limited edition colour - when the fabric is gone, we are not restocking. We have left some fabric out of production so you can still get a Bespoke form. We are gender inclusive, honour all forms, and 1% of proceeds support healthcare workers' mental health. You can find your form in our new fitting room on the site, and as always, reach out to me if you need any help or have questions at hello@myformation.ca.


I’d also love to hear what you thought of the movie and see photos of you in Pulse!


We Got This,


Dr. Kathryn Dundas M.D., C.C.F.P.

'tis the season for giving

'tis the season for giving

This holiday season, help give a healthcare worker the gift of formation scrubs! 🎁


We believe in the power of collective action, which is why we created the Pay It Forward program.  


The program allows individuals, businesses, or organizations to give the gift of the scrubs, without needing to purchase a pair. Through community donations, this program facilitates the purchase of a pair of scrubs for a health care worker through anonymous donations. 


Just like finding out at the drive-through window that the kind soul ahead of you has bought your meal, a health care worker will be surprised at the checkout on our website with a message that lets them know someone has already paid for their set of scrubs.


Our hope is that this kind gesture by community members and customers will bring a smile and moment of joy to our health care workers who have been working tirelessly on the frontlines. 


Recognizing your commitment to supporting formation’s community of health care workers, and all that they do to keep us safe and healthy, is important to us. Without the generous contribution from sponsors like you, our Pay It Forward program would not be possible.


Have a healthy and happy holiday!


We got this,


- the formation team

5 tips for handling holiday stress

5 tips for handling holiday stress

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, but can also be one of the most stressful times for healthcare workers. 


Healthcare does not rest during the holiday season, and as you know, work often gets busier. On top of an overloaded work schedule and increased personal commitments, we’re entering into the time of year that has shorter, darker, colder days. Now more than ever, it’s essential to take care of your mental and physical health.


These five tips can help you to manage stress during the next few weeks, and make the most of  the holiday season:


       1) Plan What You Can

While planning ahead is always a good idea, it’s important to remember that there are some things that are out of your control. Planning ahead can help you visualize your work shifts, holiday activities, and obligations you’ve committed. It’s okay to say no when you feel overwhelmed or overburdened, keep a calendar to help you decide which ones you will truly enjoy.


       2) Be Realistic

As we enter into the season of giving, remember that you give every day in your job - your time, your care, and your patience. While giving in and outside of work can help you feel happiness, it can also lead to burnout. It's important to know your limits. Keeping a realistic approach to the season and what you can take on both personally and professionally can help you manage expectations for the winter months.


       3) Make a List (& Check it Twice)

With so much going on, the last thing you want to do is lose track of time and feel overwhelmed with everything you need to accomplish. Instead of trying to remember everything you need to do, make a list (or two) and check off each task as you complete it. Making a list of professional and personal to-dos, ideas for holiday shopping, or writing down goals for the month will help you keep on top of everything.


       4) Savour the Season

With so much going on, remember to take a step back away from it all and enjoy the charm of the season. Throw on a Christmas playlist, make a cup of hot chocolate, and take a walk around your neighbourhood to look at the lights. 


       5) Remember to Rest

The holiday season brings more stress, more work and more travel, which typically means less rest. On top of taking on extra personal obligations, it’s also the peak of cold and flu season, so its extra important to rest and take extra measures to stay healthy. Keeping active, staying hydrated, and getting enough rest will be essential for keeping your mental health and immune system strong.



Remember you are never alone, ask for help and support when you need it, and recognize the signs of burnout. Our library has multiple resources to support your mental and emotional wellness. 


Give yourself the gift of mental and physical health this holiday season. We’re in this together!


We got this,


- the formation team

meet dr. alika lafontaine

meet dr. alika lafontaine

Meet Dr. Alika Lafontaine, an award-winning physician and the youngest president in the CMA’s 155-year history. Of Métis, Cree, Anishinaabe and Pacific Islander ancestry, he’s also the organization’s first Indigenous leader.

Assuming this role in one of the of the most challenging times in recent history, Dr. Lafontaine is committed to transforming the current state of the Canadian medical system.

Since taking over as head of the CMA in August, Dr. Lafontaine has been speaking to health ministers, elected officials and medical professionals about his and the CMA’s vision for change – primarily, that Canadian leaders would focus less on reducing upfront health costs and more on patient outcomes and how best to achieve them, such as by investing in family-care providers.

One of the main things Dr. Lafontaine has pushed for is a national licensure for physicians, which would allow Canadian physicians to easily work anywhere in the country and immediately address current shortages. Many Canadians today are struggling to find a family doctor, and emergency departments are often short-staffed and over capacity, if they’re open at all.

Dr. Lafontaine is equally as passionate about the human resources shortage that’s causing strain at institutions across the country. Instead of addressing the issue, Dr. Lafontaine explained that hospitals have allowed health professionals to cover the shortfall by working too many shifts, beyond the point of exhaustion, creating potentially unsafe conditions.  

“Now the system is breaking because people have gotten to the point where they’re saying ‘I’m just going to walk away.’” he says. “I don’t believe Canadians realize just how close to the precipice we are, physician advocacy has never been more important.”.

However, Dr. Lafontaine has a plan to change Canada’s ‘faceless’ health-care system and put us on a better path forward. To start, his goal is to break down the silos between provinces and territories, to share information, people and resources in a more collaborative way. Next, he wants to move toward true team-based care.

“Physicians have a role, nurses have a role, pharmacists and other members of the health-care team have a role. And it’s respecting that we’re all trained differently and we all do different things well.” explained Dr. Lafontaine.

We have a long way to go, but there are advocates working hard for us to get there.

We’re better together.

 We got this,

- the formation team

don’t let the turkeys get you down

don’t let the turkeys get you down

A Note from Dr. Kathryn Dundas


I don’t remember where this saying originated from, other than that I had a notepad when I was in elementary school that my mom gave me (or maybe I took it off her desk 🤷🏼‍♀️🤔) that had this cartoon by Sandra Boynton on it: 



Even at 10 years old I took this to heart - and apparently, I needed to, otherwise why would I have snagged it off mom’s desk? 🤷🏼‍♀️

Which brings me to this. We are all currently surrounded by A LOT of turkeys. Some we didn’t realize were turkeys until COVID hit. That goes for us as healthcare workers, but includes everyone and anyone who interacts with others - humans can be turkeys.

So, what do I do to not let these turkeys get me down? Well, you might laugh - my tricks are not for everyone, but I actually found fun in finding my “tricks”.

Waking up early. During COVID I started waking up 30 minutes earlier, even though I was working longer and harder hours, to READ in solitude. And by read, I mean anything not related to work. I’ve found my love of books again, and look forward to having a moment of peace and quiet with my coffee. And no, I am not a morning person, so it was difficult to start. But once I got going, I was hooked.

My most recent trick is, wait for it…..



The rebounder. I take 5 minutes of my day to jump on the rebounder I keep under the stairs, and look like a complete goof ball doing it (and yes, in my scrubs!). I do scissor kicks, twists, jumping jacks, and sometimes the cat tries to join me! All in all, it’s 5 minutes of movement and hilarity, I always end up laughing at some point.

Working on brain games before bed. During COVID, learning about the neurotrophic effects of the virus, plus turning 50 and knowing the increased risk of females for Alzheimer’s, I decided that this was something I needed to do before bed. Some people will gasp that I take my phone to bed, and gasp that I have blue light going - however, I look at it as benefit vs harm. This helps me get my brain “off-line”. It enables my mind to hop off the hamster wheel (created by the turkeys of the day!) and get into the zone. I personally love the app PEAK, and will do the daily workout. It takes about 10 minutes, and sometimes if I need a little extra, I’ll play a solitaire game for speed (yes on my phone). I find that I fall asleep right away, as I’ve derailed any Turkey Effect, and that is worth it for me.

Art. I have an art practice that is my form of meditation. It allows me to reconnect with myself and slow down, my version of self-care and expression. It’s also a great way for me to process my days - it works like a meditation for me. If you aren’t artistic, maybe just have fun and see what you can do? So many things are offered virtually now for instruction. 

Walking. This is a big one for me now. Something low intensity. I’ve given up doing boxing or HITT workouts. Maybe one day I’ll return to it, but right now, my body needs gentleness. It doesn’t need me cranking it up - I’m already cranked. Low-intensity movement helps me to relieve stress from the day, connect with nature, and is made even better when it’s a “walk and talk” with a non-Turkey. I encourage you to take some time for something low intensity and add in a little walking, yoga, or meditation if for you hard intense exercise helps keep you sane!

For those of us in healthcare I focus on these things while working:

At the clinic: Showing appreciation and gratitude in any way I can. Sharing little things like bringing in coffee, sharing funny videos or GIFS (like the above Rebounder) to lighten the mood, or bringing a bit of hilarity into an environment that is so the opposite. Perhaps a video of me on my rebounder would be even better…

With patients: After difficult patients, it can be nice to have a team huddle to keep everyone on track and confirm that we do have value. We stand and we support each other, as those turkeys can be heavy after a while. We try to ensure we have each other's back and do a regroup when needed, a call out of either “What can I do to help you?” or “Hey, we have to turn our energy around” as it starts to get contagious. If we are able to help each other and pull each other up vs push each other down, that is something. Even more so, noticing when one of us is being pushed down and reaching to pull them up. If we don’t have the energy to as we’ve been doing it for far too long, that’s ok too - but voice it. Speak up so someone will hear you, and you may be surprised who will reach out and help pull you up. 

Remember, not everyone is a turkey.

We Got This,

Dr. Kathryn Dundas + The Formation Team

code blue

code blue

According to Dr. Katharine Smart, president of the Canadian Medical Association, it is a situation that has become “unsustainable”. 

 “What we’re really seeing is just the entire system is under incredible strain. And the result of that is Canadians really struggling to get the care they need in a timely way.”


Across Canada, health-care systems are facing overwhelming pressures as a result of what is being called a “perfect storm”. 


In addition to ongoing issues with COVID-19 pandemic restrictions in health services over the last two-and-a-half years, many health workers are now reducing their hours, retiring early, leaving the public system for private clinics, or simply resigning from their jobs. Health systems across Canada are now seeing an unprecedented shortage of health-care practitioners, causing an even bigger strain to an overwhelmed system.


Emergency departments, in particular, are bearing the brunt of the many issues plaguing Canada’s depleted health system, with many ERs across Canada having to close intermittently or reduce health services in recent months. 


Provincial and territorial premiers have been collectively calling on Ottawa to increase the amount of funding the federal government sends in yearly health transfers, but to no avail.


With no obvious end in sight, it’s time for the provincial governments across Canada to take action and prioritize our healthcare professionals, one the most important pillars of our country.


We’re here for you. We’ll get through this.


We got this,


- the formation team

the “r” word

the “r” word

It is a word in team meetings that I insist is not to be used, and is not to be used in ANY of our messaging. There are days my skin crawls when I hear it. The “R” word. If you are a HCW you likely know what I’m referring to.

The “R” word - R for resiliency.

We are asked to learn to be more resilient. That we just need to give more, bend more, adapt to our surroundings, our systems and policies. 

We are OVERbent. As is our nature, we give and give and our training, our being, one who is drawn to a life of service in healthcare, already practices resiliency.

When I hear that word - it implies that I am not giving enough, my colleagues are not giving enough. That there is a flaw in us, that we need to do better, be better.

No. Hold up. Let’s recognize that the flaw is in the system. The healthcare system - globally - needs to shift. We need to start recognizing the humanness of HCWs and the inhumane way they are being treated - by administrators, governments, and unfortunately sometimes, patients.

Through COVID-19 I lost many of my staff. Many could not continue facing what other sectors would classify as abuse.

Death threats - yes I’ve had death threats as have an unbelievable amount of my colleagues.

This needs to stop. We can’t do it alone. We cannot change the system alone. We need to start together, in formation, and make our limits and boundaries clear. We need to support one another in doing so, so that the system can no longer “divide and conquer”.

We need our communities to stand with us and speak out/up for us - we often cannot speak up for ourselves for fear of losing our jobs.

Let’s support one another, stand up together and encourage our patients and our communities to speak up for us as well.  We need to be heard and be listened to, not learn to be more resilient. We already are resilient to do what we do and to have come this far.

So instead of resiliency let’s start using the “S” words:

Speak Up.

Stand Up

Support each other.

When we can’t speak up, we need to educate those around us on what the issues in healthcare are so that they can speak up for us. We need to shift the culture of medicine, not continue to support it by learning to be “more” of ANYTHING. 

We are enough.

We are formation.

Our name formation demonstrates that a shift is needed. Let’s do this together. 

As always, I love to hear from our community. If you have thoughts, comments, or a story you feel should be heard, please reach out - anonymous or otherwise.

 

Until my next progress note, 

We got this.


Dr. K

a response to our progress note

a response to our progress note

A few weeks ago, we shared an article written by formation community member, Dr. Sara R. Ahronheim. She shared her experience as a physician, the mental health struggles that come along with it and she encourages readers to not let medicine crush them during the difficult times.

After we shared Dr. Ahronheim’s story, we received feedback from a few of our community members who were strongly impacted by her story and shared their struggles working in medicine. We’d like to take this opportunity to share a story we received with the rest of our community, so we can begin to break the stigma for health care workers to seek support when they need it.

 
“Well, thank you Kathryn. I was just holding myself together, not well mind you, and then I read this. It is so beautifully written and exquisitely painful. As I sit wracked with anxiety, frustration, anger and sadness after just another normal week, I am reduced to tears. It’s been a while since I cried but now it’s impossible to stop. When people ask you how you are you say, “oh fine thanks” not even remotely connected to that answer. We lie to our patients, family, friends and strangers.. “Oh fine thanks”. What would our lives be if we told the truth? We would fall apart, drop the facade, get help, change the broken system? We’ll never know because our cries for help get trampled on.

Medicine is not a job or career or even a “calling”. It was when we so eagerly put our lives aside to get into medical school then the destruction of our being started with the first statement of indoctrination, “You are the best of the best to be in this position”, then you are systematically destroyed through years of training. After years of working and gaining experience and being confident in your clinical skills, you are hit with the feeling of what was it all for. The mental health challenges that most of us face, especially after a protracted pandemic, with the physical and financial hardships that have hit us all only laid bare the problems in our system. I feel the enormity of that on my shoulders every minute of every day and it’s crushing me.

I’m off today so I can let go for a minute, cry uncontrollably about nothing in particular and feel the sweet release of some of the pain. Thank you for that.”
-Anonymous

The thoughts shared above remind us that we need to start talking to each other, it’s the only way we can support one another and shift the culture of medicine. It’s time we stood together to break the stigma.

We are stronger together, we got this.

- the formation team
meet our collections

meet our collections

Now that you’ve found your form, which collection is best for you? Let’s find out!


We have three unique scrub collections:


Base Collection

Our Base Collection is our most basic design (hence the name), but the style is far from basic. Focused on keeping things simple, we’ve cut out the extra details and held true to the original scrub. Not a big fan of extra pockets? No problem! The Base Collection has you covered, while still keeping things functional and comfortably fitted as you move throughout your day. If you love the cut of our Core Collection, but don’t want the added detail, our Base Collection is for you!



Core Collection

Our Core Collection feels like pulling on your favourite, familiar set of scrubs - but better. Designed with the same classic cut as the Base Collection, the Core Collection has extra details to complement your form. With a straight leg bottom and a looser fit v-neck top, formation’s Core Collection pieces provide a great, functional fit. We’ve kept this collection simple and classic, while still maintaining the everyday performance you need from your scrubs.



Stratus Collection

Our Stratus Collection designed with a more athletic cut for healthcare workers on the go! Created with a less traditional take on the medical scrub, additional details in the stitching and cuffs, give these scrubs a more modern feel and can easily take you to and from the job. We’ve added functionality by making room for 11 pockets, including a transformational, first of its kind, 4-in-1 convertible pocket and sleeve pocket - to give you even more nooks and crannies for the important tools you carry with you both on the day and night shift.



Want to see more? Shop our website to find which collection is right for you!


We got this,


- the formation team

introducing: periwinkle

introducing: periwinkle

We have a brand new scrub colour, just in time for summer 🙌


Our formation scrubs are now available in Periwinkle, a beautiful blue-violet colour perfect for brightening up your wardrobe!


Your scrubs should be as unique as you are, and we encourage you to wear your scrubs in the combinations that show your personal style. Mix and match your formation scrub colours, or show off a full periwinkle look. 


We love adding colour options to the formation collection, all chosen and designed with you in mind.


Do you have a colour you’d like to see us add in the future? Or a photo of you rocking your formation scrubs? Share the love at hello@myformation.ca!


We got this,


- the formation team

don’t let medicine crush you

don’t let medicine crush you

This week, we want to share an article written by formation community member, Dr. Sara R. Ahronheim. Sarah works as an emergency physician, and is wearing Bespoke form scrubs in Metamorphic. She originally shared her story on KevinMD.com:


The house is asleep, and I can’t turn off my brain. I just cried my way through an episode of SEAL Team, especially the part where two SEALs are opening up to a psychologist about feeling broken. One says he’s tired of pretending he’s OK that he has PTSD and needs help. Later, he breaks down, and his wife folds him in her arms and tells him she’s there to pick up the pieces.
I feel like that SEAL.
Maybe that’s why this show resonates with me. After all, I’m not one for gratuitous violence and warfare. I’ve often asked myself if I only watch it because I have had a crush on David Boreanaz since he headlined “Buffy” and then “Angel.” But no — now I see the hell they go through reflects the hell we go through in medicine.
These days, it’s really hard to self-reflect and allow others to read my words or feel my emotions. There’s just too much pain in our world now, and everyone is suffering. What makes my pain more important than my neighbor’s? Nothing.
But I’m going to allow myself to write about it and let others read it because maybe it will give you, the reader, license to sit with your own grief by feeling mine.
Every day I go to work, it’s a minefield. I never know what or whom I will meet and maybe destroy or be destroyed by. When I pick up a chart for an ankle sprain, that patient could be the woman whose husband pushed her down the stairs, and that’s why she sprained her ankle. Or the chest pain in a 20-year-old man could be lymphoma. Or the constipation in the 40-year-old exceedingly kind-looking man with the softly accented voice could be new rectal cancer.
After a minor car accident a few months ago, the X-ray of her ribs was normal and my patient was sent home by the physician she saw at a community hospital in Ontario. She was still in pain three months later, so she presented to the ambulatory side of our ED. I figured, when I saw her, maybe a small fracture was missed, and it’s not healing well, or perhaps it’s all just muscular pain.
My clinical assessment found tenderness along one rib in particular. Repeat X-ray showed something not quite right, so I ordered a CT. Before even reading the whole report, in my haste to keep going and see new patients, I called her into the reassessment room. She met me smiling and thanked me for the analgesia that had dramatically improved her pain. Reading the concluding statement of the report as I stood across from her expectant face, I took a sharp breath, and without the ability to self-edit I said, “Oh no, I’m so sorry.” Then, “Let’s sit down.” Her face froze. I had fucked up. I had stabbed her in the heart with my stupid words. Thankfully, her husband was there and guided her to a seat. A harbinger of doom, I read the words aloud that sealed the fate not only of herself, but of her lover and her family, forever changing their lives.
Metastases. Multiple. Unknown primary.
Her eyes wet. Her husband’s eyes met mine, knowing. The world shifting.
It was, however, as if she already knew. The gnawing bone pain waking her and keeping her from sleep could only be one thing. And she knew. She just knew. And she tried her best to be strong for her husband. Together, they accepted the words, the plan, the further CT scans that found a large lung cancer. Together, they stoically met the dangers with swords in hand.
And me — I am devastated. Crushed. Heartbroken. Not only by the diagnosis and knowing what comes next, but by my failure. My failure to keep my mouth shut, to hold, to wait. Maybe it’s burnout, exhaustion, sleep deprivation. Maybe it’s stupidity. Maybe it’s delirium. No matter what, it’s awful.
So I know how those soldiers felt in their moments of emotional agony. I feel it too.
Emergency medicine — medicine in general — hurts my soul in ways I never knew it would. Sometimes I wish I didn’t know what I know. Walking into a room after reading a triage note, and already knowing what I’ll find. Knowing the diagnosis and the denouement of my patients’ stories way before they do. Prophecy of sorts, based on training and experience. And prophets have never had it easy. Foresight is a curse, a crutch, a needle always stabbing just that right spot where the pain is always fresh.
Medicine also lifts me. Sometimes. But lately? Nope. It has drowned me.
And I feel broken too. Hoping somehow to mend the pieces, sew them together like the wounds I’ve fixed at work, stitch them or crazy glue them until it’s possible to continue. The SEALs on the show say “ignore and override” — this can be said for physicians and nurses as well. But it’s not the right thing to do.
I hope that reading my story and hearing my struggle can help you with yours. Don’t let medicine crush you. Fight back with all your strength. Talk about it. Write about it. But let it out. In the space between people, there is healing — there is space for all the hurt inside to come out. Though you may be scared to burden others, if they care for you, let them be your parachute.”

The full article is published here. If you’d like to be part of a formation community feature, please drop us a line at hello@myformatio.ca - extra bonus if you have pictures of you rocking your formation scrubs!


We got this,


- the formation team

meet our forms

meet our forms

We know everyone is different. No two bodies are the exact same, and your scrubs should be designed to fit your form. We encourage you to embrace your body exactly as it is - because our bodies are pretty amazing. 


Our gender neutral scrubs are created around six different forms all inspired by our community and named for coordinating rock formations. Our website will help find the form that’s right for your unique needs and makes you feel good and comfortable, both on and off the job.


Meet our forms:


wave form

Named for the wave rock formations found in Arizona, USA, our Wave form is created with the more curvy, bold, and shapely form in mind. The Wave form is roomier through the top and hips, but narrower through the waist. This Form is designed to hug every beautiful convex in just the right way, while still allowing room for comfort as our forms move in different ways throughout the day.


pillar form

Standing tall with a mid-sized base and top, this form is for those of us who need equal room in the hips and mid-section. This form works well for those of us who have a few more curves or rounded edges to our forms.


cliff form 

Like the flat-faced rock formation, our Cliff form is designed for a straight build. This form doesn’t leave room for curves or shapes, and instead offers a vertical line from top to bottom. The Ciff form is for those who seek a more boxy cut and should be sized up or down depending on the desired fit.


butte form

You’ll find Buttes in the more arid regions of the world and you can’t miss these bold, strong, impressive formations. The Butte form highlights the natural convex and curves of the body and leaves generous space for those who seek a looser fit. The Butte form is cut with a muscular and/or rounded form in mind. 


arbol form

The Arbol form is shaped wider up top and narrower on the bottom. This Form is great for those of us who might need a little extra space in the shoulders and prefer a taper lower down. 


bespoke form

Bespoke, meaning custom-made, is designed to fit the unique form. This form is for those who are looking to custom fit their scrubs to fit their individual shape.


The best part? You can mix and match your scrub top and bottoms to fit your unique form! 


We’re here to support you, on and off the job.


We got this,


- the formation team

abortion access in canada

abortion access in canada

formation scrubs are proudly made, designed and produced in Canada. In the world of Canadian healthcare, we have a lot to be proud of. Canada has made countless groundbreaking health discoveries in the last century. Here is just a brief timeline of monumental medical breakthroughs:


  • 1883 - Dr. Augusta Stowe-Gullen became the first woman to receive a Canadian medical degree
  • 1921 - Dr. Frederick Banting and Dr. Charles H. Best discovered the lifesaving therapeutic potential of insulin 
  • 1949 - Dr. John Hopps, in collaboration with researchers at the University of Toronto Banting Institute, developed the world’s first cardiac pacemaker.
  • 1960s - Dr. Henry Friesen discovered the human pituitary hormone called prolactin, which helped to uncover its role in infertility
  • 1989 - Doctors at The Hospital for Sick Children, Dr. Lap-Chee Tsui, Dr.Manuel Buchwald and Jack Riordan discovered the gene that causes cystic fibrosis CF. Dr. Tsui was inducted into the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame for “the most significant breakthrough in human genetics in 50 years.”
  • 1994 - Toronto physician Dr. John Dick isolated cancer stem cells, to find that colon cancer originates from a rare type of colon cancer stem cell.
  • 2013 - Dr. Michael Strong and his research team at Western University in London, Ontario, discovered a new gene that causes ALS.
  • 2014 - Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto made medical history by live tweeting a heart bypass surgery.
  • 2015 - Canadian researchers launched the world’s first clinical trial of a therapy that uses a combination of two viruses to stimulate an anti-cancer immune response and subsequently kill cancer cells.

However, Canada and its medical system is not without its faults. As you know, the last two years of the COVID-19 pandemic have put a monumental strain on the healthcare community, from physicians to nurses and all in between.


One major healthcare topic on everyone’s mind right now is abortion, after the announcement of Row vs. Wade being overturned in the United States. Prime Minister Tudeau stated that Canada will always stand up for a women’s right to choose. Although abortion has been legal in Canada since 1969, those who live outside of Canada’s urban center’s face many barriers in accessing this time-senstive service. 


There are significant disparities between rural and urban access to abortion. In some provinces like Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Ontario, abortion providers are only in urban centers, despite 35-40% of the population living in rural or remote communities. This means many women and non-binary individuals are forced to travel to access an abortion.


Traveling to another city for a procedure also means taking time off work, planning and paying for childcare, eldercare, and/or pet care, and buying food to bring on the trip. Many abortion providers require an escort, in which case, a family member or friend must also pay out-of-pocket to travel. Some people can’t afford to pay for those expenses and many have to delay their procedure to raise the funds. Delaying an abortion can mean exceeding the gestational limit in your province, which then means having to travel even further.


Access to health services shouldn’t depend on your postal code or income bracket! 


If you or anyone you know needs help seeking an abortion, please contact the Action Canada access line here. The Access Line is a 7-day a week toll-free, confidential phone and text line for Canadians. It is available for questions about sexual health, pregnancy options, abortion, and safer sex. They provide information and make referrals to sexual health providers, so they are a great resource.


We got this,


- the formation team

our health care system is in crisis

our health care system is in crisis

It has been a long two years, and our health care workers are reaching a breaking point.


The COVID-19 pandemic has placed a considerable strain on the Canadian health care system, leading to longer patient wait times, increased staff shortages and a growing mental health crisis among front line workers.


According to Statistics Canada, the number of job vacancies among health care practitioners - primarily in hospitals -  increased almost 92 per cent in the September to December 2021 period, compared to the same period pre-pandemic in 2019.


We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: our health care workers aren’t alright.


Stress, grief, helplessness, - these are normal human responses to the health care crisis we are facing, including the global pandemic. To be a doctor is not synonymous with being unbreakable. Every person has their breaking point, and those limits are being tested in our health care community.


We need more support in our workplace, and more support for our mental health.


We are more than just a scrubs brand. We are grounded in our vision to support the mental health of our health care community through our library of resources and committing 1% of profits to support Healthcare Worker mental health and prevention of violence.


Let’s shift the culture of medicine so that healthcare workers are able to give themselves the same care and attention they give to others- they deserve it.


We got this,


- the formation team

introducing: long sleeve scrub top

introducing: long sleeve scrub top

Cold day at the clinic? We've got you covered with our NEW Long Sleeve Scrub Tops!  🎉


Available in all five forms, these tops have specially designed sleeves to allow you to style them to your liking - roll them, pull them or keep them down.


As with all of our scrubs, our Long Sleeve tops are made from formation's proprietary SilvaTec anti-wrinkle, water-repellant, 4-way stretch fabric, with SilvaDur antimicrobial, odour resistant technology. This technology adheres silver ions to fabric surfaces and activates them in the presence of odor-causing bacteria. In other words, you'll smell fresh and clean before, during, and after your shift!


This top is available in all five formation colours: Obsidian (Black), Nightfall (Blue), Glacier (Turquoise), Steel (Grey) and Metamorphic (Red).


Whether it’s a long day in the OR or a chilly overnight shift, our Long Sleeve Scrub Top will be there to carry you through.


Order your top in your favourite form and colour now on our website!


We got this,


- the formation team

the 2022 cwim conference

the 2022 cwim conference

Last week, the formation team travelled to Victoria, British Columbia to attend the annual Canadian Women in Medicine (CWIM) Conference, a landmark event for thousands of women in medicine. Now in its fifth year, the CWIM Conference was created in order to provide additional support to women physicians throughout the year by way of advocacy, mentorship, and social/charitable events.


Offered to attendees both in person and virtually, the conference included onsite workshops & events led by prominent female physicians from all over the country. 


As an event sponsor, the formation team arrived with an interactive exhibitor booth for attendees to visit, learn more about the brand, and have the opportunity to find their form. We brought countless scrub sizes, forms, and collections, as well as scrub caps and masks for attendees to view or purchase.


For interested members, the formation team was taking custom measurements and matching members to their perfect scrub form and size. Attendees could then use our custom change room to try on the scrubs, decide which style they prefer, and place orders to be delivered to their home. 


We gained such valuable insight from the CWIM attendees, and were happy to help so many women find their form.


Our team had such a great time meeting so many of you, looking forward to 2023!


We got this,


- the formation team

formation’s pay it forward program

formation’s pay it forward program

Driven to be a solution in a chaotic world, Dr. Dundas founded formation to provide supportive resources for health care workers to do their jobs and feel appreciated and honoured by what they wear, by each other, and by their community.

The pandemic has caused a mental health crisis among our healthcare workers. Something as small as a thank you from a community member can turn their days around - but they deserve so much more than that.

Enter formation’s pay it forward program.

 

formation’s pay it forward program facilitates the purchase of a pair of scrubs for a healthcare worker. Just like finding out at the drive-through window that a kind person ahead of you has paid for your meal, a healthcare worker will be surprised when at the formation online checkout with a message that lets them know that someone has already paid for their set of scrubs.

 

The program allows individuals, businesses, or organizations to gift scrubs without needing to purchase their own pair - though we’re confident that even non-healthcare workers will love the products! Orders are selected at random for the gifted scrubs. A customer can also decline the gifted scrubs, putting them back into the pool for someone else to receive. The cost of the scrubs are covered by generous sponsors and by collecting and pooling small donations from customers through our website at checkout.

 

Our hope is that this kind gesture by community members and customers will bring a smile and moment of joy to our health care workers who have been working tirelessly on the frontlines.

 

We encourage all customers to consider donating to the Pay it Forward Program to support our efforts to give back to our healthcare workers. If you are interested in becoming a Pay It Forward sponsor, or to learn more about how you can make a long-term community investment in our healthcare workers, please get in touch at hello@myformation.ca.

 

In addition to formation’s Pay it Forward program, our website has a curated library of supportive resources that healthcare workers can access any time they need it. These resources include articles, videos and podcasts that give advice on topics such as burnout, wellness and more. Our library also has links to supportive programs for healthcare workers who need support.

 

If you or anyone in the healthcare industry is struggling with their mental health, please visit our library to find resources that can help.

 

We got this,

 

- the formation team

new website coming soon!

new website coming soon!

Coming Soon…⏰

 

The formation team is thrilled to announce the launch of our brand NEW website that will be going live this June!

 

Our new and improved website will now include customer reviews, a pay it forward function, and will allow customers who have already found their form to ‘shop their form’ and discover new colour combinations.

 

In honour of our upcoming launch, we would like to reintroduce ourselves.

 

Born during a global pandemic, started out of necessity and built around community, formation is a health care lifestyle brand created by Dr. Kathryn Dundas, a fourth generation Canadian physician. Driven to be a solution in a chaotic world, Dr. Dundas founded formation with the goal of providing supportive resources - including scrubs - for health care workers to power them through their day.

 

In addition to helping our community find their form, the formation library provides a curated library of resources to support your mental and emotional wellness. This will be regularly updated with upcoming industry events, a collection of articles, videos, and books, as well as a list of available mental health resources. To further support our community, formation commits to donating 1% of all proceeds to mental health programs and prevention of violence initiatives for healthcare workers.

 

We are proud to manufacture our products in a Canadian factory where workers are paid above a living wage and provided with medical and dental benefits. Our production process ensures we’re using as little waste as possible, including creating products out of fabric scraps.

 

You might notice a few new products in the shop, including a newly designed Scrub Cap, Low Rise Scrub Pants, and Long Sleeve Scrub Top.

 

We’ve been working hard behind the scenes to enhance our page, and we can’t wait to share it with you!

 

We got this,

 

- the formation team

canadian women in medicine (cwim)

canadian women in medicine (cwim)

Attention all Physicians and HCW’s 🎉

The formation team will be attending the Canadian Women in Medicine Conference, a landmark Canadian event for thousands of women in medicine. The event will be hosted both virtually and in-person in Victoria, British Columbia from June 3rd- 4th.

The Canadian Women in Medicine (CWIM) Organization is a national not-for-profit with a mission to connect and support women physicians in all aspects of their lives. Now entering its fifth year, the CWIM Conference was created to provide additional support to women physicians throughout the year by way of advocacy, mentorship, and social/charitable events. It has grown to be the largest gathering of women physicians in North America, and continues to be dedicated to honouring the life of Dr. Elana Fric, and all other women affected by Intimate Partner Violence (IPV), by raising funds for charities that support women and their children.

formation is one of many sponsors of this year’s event, along with CIBC, L’Oreal Active Cosmetics, Scotiabank Healthcare, Ontario MD, Telus Health Mycare, TD, RBC Healthcare, and more.

The formation exhibitor booth will include all of our formation scrubs, a changeroom, and formation experts who will help you find your form. We will also be hosting a giveaway for all in-person and virtual attendees who will have the chance to win a free set of custom formation scrubs!

The conference will include live onsite workshops & events led by prominent female physicians from all over the country. The workshops will focus on topics such as Equity in Medicine, “Lady” Surgeons Disrupting Gender Bias, and “Not Like Other Women”: Challenging Internalized Sexism to Create Meaningful Change.

There will also be breakfast and lunch provided by CWIM, as well as optional events including morning yoga, mentorship breakfasts, and the favourite annual event to end the conference, bubbles and bye-byes. 

Whether you'd like to join us in person in beautiful Victoria, British Columbia, or virtually, we are looking forward to seeing you at the fifth annual CWIM Conference!

We got this,

- the formation team
Health Care Worker Spotlight—Meet Jason!

Health Care Worker Spotlight—Meet Jason!

This week we’d like to introduce you to Jason—a RN and business owner based in Calgary, Alberta. He founded a clinic and training organization in the self-care, health vitality, and beauty space. When he isn’t seeing patients or working on this business, you’ll find him out in the rocky mountains snowboarding, hiking, or biking. 

We wanted to share more about what Jason does, what he’s passionate about, and how he’s been managing through the pandemic, so we sat down for a virtual interview with him:


formation: Why health care?

Jason: I had wanted to become a physician since the day my parents purchased me a Fisher Price medical doctor kit when I was about 3 or 4 years old. I started pre-med in university and realized that being a physician wasn’t the best fit, but I still knew that healthcare was where I needed to land. I found that nursing was the route that allowed me to be in healthcare but provided more opportunities for different avenues—delivery of care, community, business of healthcare, and science of healthcare. 


f: Feelings on COVID + the pandemic?


J: Our team’s “a-ha moment” happened during COVID where we realized that the care we provide at our clinic affected not just the external cosmetic of our patients, but also their mental health and spirituality. Our clients have a really great connection with our team—this kind of connection can sometimes be difficult to find in the public healthcare system.

When the pandemic hit, our clinics were able to be a safe space for so many of our patients to be able to come in and connect with our team. Where social distancing and isolation became the norm, we were sometimes the only other place patients would leave the security of their homes to receive “close contact” services. We helped people realize the connection that caring for themselves was a form of continuing positive health choices, so our mantra evolved into “self care is healthcare”.

The good news is that we are almost out of the worst parts of this pandemic, but we all need to continue staying safe, strong, and healthy, and keep sick people out of the acute care system. I’m so excited to see how many people are jumping to get their vaccines! Looking forward to a summer where I can see my friends and family and feel safe without the stress or pressure of exposing someone to the virus. 


f: Let’s talk about mental health for health care workers—what can the community do to support?

J: The work we do as caregivers, in my opinion, is an exchange of energy. As caregivers, we put our patients first and we are the worst for taking the time to focus some of that energy we are so willing to give, on ourselves.

I believe that neither our team, nor myself can be fully engaged caregivers if we first don’t take care of ourselves. We more often than not fail to recognize this and it’s always great to have others remind us in a caring and empathetic way.

For me personally last year, I had a few moments as a business owner and healthcare provider, where I felt helpless. 

As someone who has battled depression and anxiety for several years now, this was really scary, and there were a few very close moments that I wanted to “check out” of this world. I didn’t want to show weakness or my own stress to those that were counting on me to be the strong one at home for my family and for the team at the clinic.

As a community, we all need to look out for one another. Don’t be afraid to reach out to support someone and don’t be afraid to ask for support—battling mental health struggles is a community effort, not just a personal one.


f: Initial feelings on formations scrubs?


J: I was thrilled to be a part of the initial photoshoot! I really loved the inscriptions that are tucked away inside the scrubs. The words of encouragement are really cool and motivating. There is actually a Japanese art/belief that if you place words of positivity or negativity on a bottle of water, the water will absorb the meaning (good or bad) of those words. Our body is essentially 70- 80% water, so reading the positive words as I change into formation scrubs sets me up for a positive day to deliver our form of care—not to mention they are super comfy! 

We appreciate Jason taking time out of his busy schedule to chat with us and share his thoughts and experiences over the last year and a half. Oh! And for being one superb model!

If you’d like to connect with Jason you can reach him on Instagram at:

@GLOWMD_Jason
@GLOWMDclinics
@the_aesthetic_coach 

Or visit his business website at https://glowmdclinics.com/


We got this,

- the formation team

the history of scrubs

the history of scrubs

For most health care workers, scrubs make up the majority of our workwear. For some who weren’t wearing scrubs before the pandemic, you've now found yourselves wearing them all the time, and we've heard that you'll continue to wear them going forward. We often wear them for 10+ hours a day or a night, pushing the clothing to the limit as we respond to the demands of our roles. But up until very recently, scrubs were not designed for the modern health care worker—they were designed for the ‘average’ man’s body.

 

While we can trace scrubs roots back to the medieval times. The pandemic has actually shone a light on the historical plague ‘uniforms’ as photos of doctors in flu masks from 1918 circulate around social media.

As recently as a few years ago, health care workers were hard pressed to find scrubs that actually fit. The available scrubs were ill fitting, ran on the large side, and were about as fashionable or trendy as a trash bag. While at a basic level they were functional, the clothing did very little to inspire any sort of body confidence while being worn. Innovation in the scrub space was non-existent, despite advances in fabric technology over the past few years. 

More recently companies have released products that are better suited for today’s modern health care worker. But even as we have started to see trendier scrub designs, there still remains a large gap. This is where formation shines.

Our scrubs are being produced in gender neutral sizes and shapes. We recognize that there is a great diversity of body types, and every human deserves to feel confident and comfortable in the clothing they wear day and night. formation scrubs will be available in five different shapes - allowing you to mix and match which tops and bottoms to best suit your unique body.

Stayed tuned to upcoming communications where we’ll dive into each fit & help you decide which products will meet your needs.

-The formation team


PS - We’ve had a slight delay with the timing of our pre-order as we (like many other companies!) navigate the ongoing supply chain issues as a result of the pandemic. Continue to keep an eye on our social media and emails—we promise an announcement is coming soon!

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