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Federal cuts will dent Ohio health initiatives

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio officials are warning that federal budget cuts are going to put a dent in public health programs.

The Ohio Department of Health said Thursday that cuts totaling nearly $8.5 million so far will affect programs including newborn hearing screenings, food assistance programs and abstinence education.

The Columbus Dispatch (http://bit.ly/18b6BgA ) reports that the state health department will absorb much of the costs, but local health departments will have to figure out how to cover some losses.

The state health department director, Dr. Theodore Wymyslo, said he wrote a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius asking for more information about other cuts. Officials say the lack of details coming out of Washington has made it more difficult to plan for the reductions.

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