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LOS ANGELES COUNTY : Supervisors Seek Report on Impact of Health Cuts

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Wary of a public outcry over possible health department cuts, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has asked county health officials for realistic estimates of which services might be eliminated.

Facing a deficit of between $800 million and $1.3 billion in the overall 1995-96 county budget, the board has been trying to agree on how to present the required public notice about potential health cuts.

Supervisor Yvonne Brathwaite Burke asked for changes in the proposed notices advanced by the Department of Health Services because the notices warn the public of far greater cuts than the supervisors probably will carry out.

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Burke said giving notice that hospitals may have to be closed is misleading and argued that the notices should reflect cuts the board intends to make.

Burke also asked the chief administrative officer to draft a public notice announcing that the county is considering ways to generate revenue. One proposal is to charge at least $5 for any health service.

The Department of Health Services has to post notices in the event of proposed cuts that would decrease the level of county health services.

Burke asked for new proposals to be drafted with details on how the department budget would be cut in increments of $100 million, up to a potential total of $600 million. The proposals are due in two weeks.

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