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Judge tells W.Va. DHHR to comply with pay order

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A judge says the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources must provide more than a half a million dollars in raises to staff at the state's psychiatric hospitals.

Kanawha County Circuit Court Judge Duke Bloom ordered the DHHR on Wednesday to comply with his 2009 order requiring the raises for staffers who work with psychiatric patients.

Bloom issued the latest order following testimony in an ongoing case known as the Hartley case. The case began in 1981 and centers on the treatment of mental health patients.

According to testimony and evidence, the DHHR spends more than $1 million a year for overtime at Mildred Mitchell-Bateman Hospital in Huntington and at William R. Sharpe Jr. Hospital in Weston.


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