THOMASVILLE — Southeastern Community Blood Center (SCBS) officials are concerned that hospital patient elective surgeries will have to be canceled and rescheduled if blood donations do not increase immediately. 

Maintaining an adequate daily blood supply is an integral part of managing patients’ day-to-day medical needs, said Jeanne Dariotis, SCBS chief executive officer.

 SCBC is appealing to the public to visit a bloodmobile or center immediately and give blood so the supply can recover to a five-day supply — before the current blood shortage delays hospital medical treatment and surgeries.

 Blood donations may be made at SCBC’s Thomasville branch at Remington Avenue and Pinetree Boulevard from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. Dariotis said it takes 24 to 48 hours to process a donated unit of blood before it can be transfused to a patient. 

“Our communities have not rebounded from the impact of the July 4 blood donation slowdown. Donations are simply not keeping up with the demand for donated blood,” said Dariotis. “SCBC has not seen such a dramatic slowdown of blood donations since November 2003. Collections for July were at 75 percent of expectations.” 

Blood shortages are rampant in all parts of the country during the summer. Less blood donations nationally translates into the low probability that SCBC can import blood from blood centers outside SCBC’s service area of 26 counties in North Florida and South Georgia. Appealing to other blood centers for help is routine protocol for SCBC during times of local blood shortages.

SCBS is non-profit and the only blood center providing blood to families in 26 counties in North Florida and South Georgia.

The agency’s home office is at 1731 Riggins Road in Tallahassee, Fla., with branches in Douglas and in Marianna and Panama City in Florida.

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