Running Out of Toilet Paper

A few weeks ago, it would not have occurred to me to consider this as a topic. Today, it has relevance for far too many of us. As the COVID-19 pandemic spreads across the world, there is a run on many essentials. This seems to be especially true of toilet paper. The shelves are empty in many stores across the nation.

This illustrates several points as we move through this pandemic. First, it is so easy to take for granted many things and people who are important in our lives. This pandemic will pass and what we are doing now will affect its severity, but all losses will be great misfortunes.

On the economic side, this pandemic will pose serious challenges for individuals and businesses. ABS remains open for business. Our first concern is the welfare of our employees and clients. As many staff as possible are working from home. This includes our Client Services and our Business Development staff. Because all of the work that we do and all client contacts are managed in a secure Cloud-based Oracle® database, working remotely does not impair services. Biospecimen procurement and our cell culture laboratories are fully operational, as are shipping and logistics. If there are any changes that impact our ability to serve our clients, we will post that information on our website.

We did not anticipate this pandemic. However, as discussed in my October 1, 2019 blog, the need to prepare for an economic downturn did not catch us by surprise. Our reserves are adequate to weather this storm. ABS has years of preparation that enable us to continue operations remotely and rapidly ramp up shipments as the situation improves. We will be there for the long term for our employees and our clients.

Whatever your state of preparedness is, pandemic should not become an abbreviation for panic and epidemic. Panic hoarding is understandable. Individually, it may even be a rational response; collectively, it only aggravates the situation. The metaphor of being at war with a virus may motivate some to action, but this way of thinking has its limitations. This challenge may last several months. Our flight or fight instincts may only exhaust our reserves and lead to ill-considered decisions. Patience, kindness, and concern for others may serve us better. With that I will close, because I have to go out and get more toilet paper before it is all gone.

And for those of you, who have watched Breaking Bad: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xyIzhRvtIJ0&feature=youtu.be

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