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Brown signs bill cutting $1.5 billion in health spending

One of the budget bills Gov. Jerry Brown signed Thursday seeks to make more than $1.5 billion in cuts to state spending on health care for the poor, mostly in Medi-Cal and the Healthy Families insurance program. Most of the cuts will be achieved by reducing by 10 percent the reimbursement for doctors, hospitals and other providers that care for the poor. The bill will also increase premiums in the Healthy Families program, implement co-payments in Medi-Cal and limit doctor visits and the reimbursement for over-the-counter medication.