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State, feds reach deal on mental health care

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia has agreed to expand mental health services for children after a federal investigation found the state unnecessarily institutionalized kids with emotional or behavioral disorders.

Officials from the U.S. Department of Justice and West Virginia announced the agreement Tuesday at a news conference.

The deal requires the state to develop and improve in-home and community-based mental health services to reduce the number of children in residential centers.

Federal investigators told West Virginia in 2015 that the state wasn’t complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act by sending mentally ill children away to residential centers rather than providing treatment where they live.

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