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Cumberland Hospital Faces Blood Shortage

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FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — Doctors at Cape Fear Valley Medical Center may have to postpone elective surgeries because the hospital is running out of blood.

The blood center is in need of O positive and O negative blood. Officials say this time of year is often slow because people are sick and cannot donate blood.

Officials say the need is great in Fayetteville because many of the soldiers who often donate blood have been deployed. In addition, soldiers who have lived in certain European countries in the 1980s and 1990s are now ineligible to donate because of the mad cow disease threat, which disqualifies about 20 percent of their regulars at Fort Bragg.

"Most military families have lived in these areas during that time and even though we think it's just the husband or wife, if they have children, it affects them as well," said Mary Fisher, of the blood center.

Pfc. Michael Peck said he is glad he can help out while other soldiers are away defending our country.

"I think it's the responsibility of whoever is not deployed to take the responsibility and give blood," he said.

Due to the need for blood, Cape Fear's Blood Center, located on 3357 Village Drive, will extend its hours from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. all next week.

There is also a large blood drive scheduled at the Chick-Fil-A on Skibo Road from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.

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