"And they expect him to act like he's normal to prove to them that he can get out of the hospital," she said.
DHHR spokesman John Law declined to comment on Monday, saying that he could not discuss any specific patient's case.
People with dual diagnoses of mental disability and mental illness, like Shumbera, are particularly vulnerable to being exploited, said Rachel Fetty, a program attorney for the West Virginia Medley Hartley Advocacy Program, which advocates for the mentally ill.
They don't always know how to process their experiences, and they don't always understand the personal boundaries that can define social interaction, Fetty said. They seek approval, can be suggestible, and don't always know what is inappropriate.
Consequently, they need continuing cues and reminders from service providers to help them accomplish routine daily tasks, she said. But with the proper support -- like the services provided under the MR/DD waiver program -- they can live in the community, she said.
In Shumbera's case, he was admitted to the waiver program in July 2010, but he still needed a detailed treatment plan, and a spot in an appropriate facility, before he could leave the hospital where he'd been institutionalized for a decade.
"It's like prison. It's a terrible place for people with dual diagnoses," Fetty said of mental institutions. Their complicated rules, particularly for earning certain privileges, can be incredibly confusing for people with dual diagnoses, sometimes resulting in a build-up of frustration at being unable to enjoy the same freedoms as others in the hospital, she said.
Shumbera grew despondent over staying in the hospital when he knew a judge had ruled he was eligible to leave, she said.
All the while, officials at Bateman maintained that he was not fit to be released to managed care, Fetty said. They cited incidents where he was given a PRN -- which involves the administration of a sedative via injection -- because he spit or swore, she said.
"They just drugged him up so that they don't have to deal with him," Crose said.
After Shumbera was released from Cabell Huntington, he was taken to a crisis center and remains there, Fetty said. During that time, he has not had any PRNs for acting out, she said.
"Based on what we've seen so far, he is capable of living in the community with service providers. He has a service provider who is with him 24 hours a day," she said. "He is able to manage his behaviors."
Ironically, it took the sexual assault and subsequent removal from Bateman to give Shumbera the opportunity to demonstrate that he can handle life outside of a mental institution, his mother said.
"This is a shame that it had to happen, but the only good thing about it all is it got him out of the hospital," she said.
Reach Andrew Clevenger at acleven...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1723.