Associated Press Published

W.Va. Agency in Contempt of Mental Health Orders

Mental Hospital

A judge has ordered two West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources officials to appear in court later this month after finding the agency in contempt of court orders regarding the state’s psychiatric hospitals.

The DHHR also must immediately reduce the number of patients at William R. Sharpe Jr. Hospital in Weston and at Mildred-Mitchell Bateman Hospital in Huntington to ease understaffing.
The Charleston Gazette reports Kanawha County Circuit Court Judge Duke Bloom issued the order on Tuesday.
Bloom directed Health and Human Resources Secretary Karen Bowling and Bureau for Behavioral Health and Health Facilities commissioner Victoria Jones to appear at a show-cause hearing on July 15.

Jones told the newspaper in a statement that none of the bureau’s actions warrants a contempt order.