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California IN BRIEF : SACRAMENTO : Health Centers Sue on Abortion Policy

From Times staff and Wire reports

Operators of five women’s health centers charged that the state puts abortion providers at the bottom of its priority list for medical insurance compensation, and asked the federal court to guarantee them equal treatment. The suit charged that the state’s action violated provisions in the federal Constitution for equal treatment under law. Mark Merin, a Sacramento attorney representing the clinics, said he had been told by Elisabeth Brandt, chief counsel for the Department of Health Services, “that there were more worthy recipients” for the money. Brandt denied making that statement. “Women are still able to get abortions, even even if payments to clinics are delayed 60 to 90 days,” Brandt said. Defendants include health services director Kenneth Kizer, Brandt and other department employees. The clinics are in Sacramento, Chico, Redding, Santa Rosa and San Diego.


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