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State health secretary says cuts expected by Friday

Department of Health and Hospitals Secretary Bruce Greenstein says he expects to announce by Friday how he'll divvy up $859 million in cuts to Louisiana's Medicaid program.

The cut is tied to a congressional reduction in Louisiana's federal Medicaid financing rate.

Greenstein didn't offer details Tuesday about what will be slashed. But hospitals, doctors and other health providers are bracing for cuts that could shrink the money they receive for taking care of Medicaid patients and the uninsured.

The cuts are an 11 percent reduction from Louisiana's $7.7 billion Medicaid budget.

Louisiana Hospital Association President John Matessino says he expects the cuts to be painful. Fred Cerise, LSU's vice president for health affairs, says any cuts to Medicaid funds for the LSU-run public hospitals and clinics will shutter services.

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