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U.S. Attorney Urges Reversal on Children's Treatment Center

U.S. Attorney's Office

A federal prosecutor is urging West Virginia to rescind its approval of a proposed children's psychiatric hospital in Logan.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports that U.S. Attorney William Ihlenfeld objected to the 70-bed facility in an Oct. 13 letter to Karen Bowling, the state health and human resources secretary.

In June, the U.S. Department of Justice criticized the state for too often placing children in institutions rather than in home-based services.

Health department spokeswoman Sarah Lieu said Bowling approved the facility so children being treated in out-of-state facilities can be returned to West Virginia. But Ihlenfeld wrote that the out-of-state facilities are closer to home for some children than the proposed Logan treatment center. He also said there has been a lack of transparency in the planning stage.

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