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West Virginia Mental Health Services Guide

Many people don't realize that publicly-funded mental health services are available in their state. People looking for free or low-cost counseling often think their only options are counselors in private practice and don't know that publicly-funded providers in their communities may also offer counseling services. 

 

While state-based programs are not for everyone, they're often a great place to start for people who face geographic or financial barriers to therapy. Intake specialists at community mental health programs can help people learn whether they qualify for state-funded services and can refer people who don't qualify to other low-cost programs that may be able to meet their needs.


 

When Should You Go to a State Mental Health Program?

 

Few private mental health providers are able to immediately serve people in crisis, while most state mental health systems, including West Virginia's, have crisis response systems that help people get mental health care quickly in an emergency. This usually makes public mental health programs the best option if you're having a mental health crisis and need help right away. The people who answer crisis lines provide caring attention and support as they help you determine the best response to a crisis, whether it's inpatient treatment or an appointment with a counselor.

 

Publicly-funded outpatient mental health programs in West Virginia are called comprehensive community behavioral health centers (CBHCs). In addition to affordable therapy, CBHCs provide specialized and intensive services that aren't available anywhere else or that are hard to find in private clinics, like case management and day treatment programs. Consider going to a CBHC if you need intensive treatment, live in a rural county with limited resources, or can't access mental health care in the private sector due to your diagnosis or financial situation.


Who Is Eligible for Public Mental Health Services in West Virginia?

 

West Virginia doesn't have strict statewide eligibility criteria for public mental health services. This means you don't necessarily have to have a severe mental health condition or serious mental illness (SMI) to qualify for services at a CBHC. However, as in all other states, public mental health funding is limited in West Virginia and the state system prioritizes people in the following groups:

 

  • People who have SMI,
  • People who have or are eligible for Medicaid,
  • People whose incomes are at or below the poverty level, and
  • People who are involved with the criminal justice system.

 

If you are not in one of these groups, whether you can receive services through the public system will depend on where you are trying to access services and the level of funding they have at the time. Eligibility criteria for counseling and other non-intensive mental health services are less strict than they are for more intensive services like case management and day treatment, but counseling services are sometimes limited or cut when state mental health budgets are cut. 

 

Most CBHCs in West Virginia accept both public and private insurance and offer sliding fee scales to people who don't have insurance. If you can afford the sliding-scale fee at the CBHC where you'd like to receive counseling, you may be able to receive counseling there even if you don't qualify for public funding assistance. You're likely to pay less than you'd pay in the private sector. 

 

What options are available and to whom will vary from program to program. The best way to find out if you can get low-cost counseling at a West Virginia CBHC is to call your local program and ask. Even if you don't qualify, intake staff can often give you free referrals to nonprofit programs and other affordable local providers.


How Can You Find Out More About Local Programs in West Virginia?

 

The best way to find out about your local CBHC in West Virginia is to call the program directly. We've listed contact information for all CHBCs, including their main and crisis numbers and the numbers for their main and satellite office locations, in the section below. You can also refer to the directory (PDF) of CBHCs on the West Virginia Bureau for Behavioral Health (BBH) website or the Service Map on the West Virginia System of Care website.

 

For general information about the West Virginia public mental health system, you can contact the BBH central office at (304) 356-4811. You can reach the statewide mental health crisis line for West Virginia, HELP4WV, at (844) 435-7498. You don't have to be in crisis to call; HELP4WV serves as a general information and referral helpline as well as a crisis line for West Virginia.

 

West Virginia's Mental Health Clinics and Access Numbers

 

 

  • Appalachian Community Health Center
    1. Serving Barbour, Randolph, Tucker, and Upshur Counties
    2. Main Number: (304) 636-3232 or (888) 357-3232
    3. Crisis Line: (888) 357-3232 or (304) 636-3232
    4. Office Locations:
      • Randolph County Office (Elkins): (304) 636-3232
      • Barbour County Office (Belington): (304) 823-3873
      • Upshur County Office (Buckhannon): (304) 472-2022
      • Tucker County Office (Parsons): (304) 478-2764

 

  • EastRidge Health Systems
    1. Serving Berkeley, Jefferson, and Morgan Counties
    2. Main Number: (304) 263-8954
    3. Crisis Line: (855) 807-1258
    4. Office Locations:
      • Berkeley County Office (Martinsburg): (304) 263-8954
      • Jefferson County Office (Kearneysville): (304) 725-7565
      • Morgan County Office (Berkeley Springs): (304) 258-2889

 

  • FMRS Health Systems
    1. Serving Fayette, Monroe, Raleigh, and Summers Counties
    2. Main Number: (304) 256-7100
    3. Crisis Line: (888) 523-6437 or (304) 256-7100
    4. Office Locations:
      • Raleigh County Office (Beckley): (304) 256-7100
      • Fayette County Office (Fayetteville): (304) 574-2100
      • Monroe County Office (Union): (304) 772-5452
      • Summers County Office (Hinton): (304) 466-3899

 

  • HealthWays, Inc.
    1. Serving Brooke and Hancock Counties
    2. Main Number: (304) 723-5440 or (800) 774-2429
    3. Crisis Line: (304) 797-6000
    4. Office Location:  
      • HealthWays Main Office (Weirton): (304) 723-5440

 

  • Logan-Mingo Area Mental Health
    1. Serving Logan and Mingo Counties
    2. Main Number: (304) 792-7130
    3. Logan County Crisis Line: (304) 792-7130
    4. Mingo County Crisis Line: (304) 235-2954
    5. Office Locations:
      • LMAMH Main Office (Logan): (304) 792-7130
      • Cattaroy Center (Chattaroy): (304) 235-2954
      • Anchor Point Residential Treatment Center (Delbarton): (304) 475-3366

 

  • Northwood Health Systems
    1. Serving Brooke, Hancock, Marshall, Ohio, and Wetzel Counties
    2. Main Number: (304) 234-3500 or (304) 234-7777
    3. Crisis Line: (304) 234-3583
    4. Office Locations:
      • Wheeling Clinic: (304) 234-7777
      • Weirton Clinic: (304) 217-3050
      • Moundsville Clinic: (304) 845-3000
      • New Martinsville Clinic: (304) 455-3622

 

  • Potomac Highlands Mental Health Guild
    1. Serving Grant, Hampshire, Hardy, Mineral, and Pendleton Counties
    2. Main Number: (304) 257-4687 or (304) 257-1155
    3. Crisis Line: (800) 545-4357
    4. Office Locations
      • Petersburg Clinic: (304) 257-1155
      • Romney Clinic: (304) 822-3897
      • Moorefield Clinic: (304) 538-2302
      • Keyser Clinic: (304) 788-2241
      • Franklin Clinic: (304) 358-2351

 

  • Prestera Center
    1. Serving Boone, Cabell, Clay, Kanawha, Lincoln, Mason, Putnam, and Wayne Counties
    2. Main Number: (304) 525-7851 or (877) 399-7776
    3. Crisis Line: (800) 642-3434
    4. Office Locations
      • Boone County Office (Danville): (304) 369-1930
      • Cabell County Office (Huntington): (304) 525-7851
      • Clay County Office (Clay): (304) 587-4205
      • Kanawha County Office (Charleston): (304) 341-0511
      • Lincoln County Office (Branchland): (304) 824-5790
      • Mason County Office (Point Pleasant): (304) 675-2361
      • Putnam County Office (Hurricane): (304) 414-3076
      • Wayne County Office (Wayne): (304) 272-3466

 

  • Seneca Health Services, Inc.
    1. Serving Greenbrier, Nicholas, Pocahontas, and Webster Counties
    2. Main Number: (304) 872-6503
    3. Crisis Line: Use the number for the office serving your county (see below)
    4. Office Locations:
      • Nicholas County Office (Summersville): (304) 872-2659
      • Webster County Office (Webster Springs): (304) 847-5425
      • Pocahontas County Office (Marlinton): (304) 799-6865
      • Greenbrier County Office (Maxwelton): (304) 497-0500

 

 

  • United Summit Center of West Virginia
    1. Serving Barbour, Braxton, Gilmer, Harrison, Lewis, Marion, Monongalia, Preston, Taylor, and Upshur Counties
    2. Main Number: (304) 623-5661
    3. Crisis Line: (800) 786-6480 (800-SUMMIT-0)
    4. Office Locations:
      • Harrison County Office / Main Office (Clarksburg): (304) 623-5666 x5800
      • Bridgeport Psychiatric Care Unit (Bridgeport): (304) 933-3630
      • Bridgeport Primary Care Unit (Bridgeport): (304) 623-5666 x5815
      • Clarksburg Crisis Stabilization Unit (Clarksburg): (304) 623-0497
      • Clarksburg SCILS Unit (Clarksburg): (304) 566-7932
      • The Bob Mays Recovery Center (Clarksburg): (304) 623-2178
      • Upshur County Office (Buckhannon): (304) 623-5666 x5835
      • Marion County Office (Fairmont): (304) 623-5666 x5830
      • Gilmer County Office (Glenville): (304) 623-5666 x5850
      • Taylor County Office (Grafton): (304) 623-5666 x5840
      • John D. Good Recovery Center (Terra Alta): (304) 789-3143
      • Preston County Office (Kingwood): (304) 623-5666 x5845
      • Monongalia County (Morgantown): (304) 623-5666 x5825
      • Barbour County Office (Philippi): (304) 623-5666 x5815
      • Braxton County Office (Sutton): (304) 623-5666 x5810
      • Lewis County Office (Weston): (304) 623-5666 x5805

 

  • Valley HealthCare System
    1. Serving Marion, Monongalia, Preston, and Taylor Counties
    2. Main Number: (304) 296-1731 or (800) 232-0020
    3. Crisis Line: (800) 232-0020
    4. Office Locations:
      • Main Office (Morgantown): (304) 296-1731
      • Fairmont Office: (304) 366-7174
      • Kingwood Office: (304) 329-1059
      • Grafton Office: (304) 265-3947
      • Crisis Residential Unit (Morgantown): (304) 225-2280

 

  • Westbrook Health Services
    1. Serving Calhoun, Jackson, Pleasants, Ritchie, Roane, Tyler, Wirt, and Wood Counties
    2. Main Number: (304) 485-1721 
    3. Crisis Line: (304) 485-1725 or (800) 579-5844
    4. Office Locations:
      • Wood County Offices (Parkersburg): (304) 485-1721 and (304) 485-1785
      • Roane County Office (Spencer): (304) 927-5200
      • Jackson County Office (Ripley): (304) 372-6833
      • Pleasants County Office (St. Marys): (304) 684-2656
      • Ritchie County Office (Harrisville): (304) 643-2996

 

Federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) are another option for public mental health care in West Virginia. These federally-funded programs provide medical and mental health services to people in underserved communities. Their goal is to deliver high-quality coordinated care to people with complex needs and to link behavioral healthcare with primary medical care. Each FQHC accepts Medicaid and Medicare and offers sliding-scale fees to people without insurance. You can search for FQHCs using the online search tool on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services website. 

 

How Does West Virginia's Public Mental Health System Work?

In the 1960s, Americans started thinking differently about how to treat mental health conditions. New laws required state and local governments to establish community mental health programs as alternatives to institutionalization for people with serious mental illness. Many states' public mental health programs trace their origins back to this period. West Virginia is no exception.

 

Many of the West Virginia programs that later became certified as CBHCs were founded in the late 1960s using funds created by the federal Community Mental Health Act, which President John F. Kennedy signed into law in 1963. Before then, like most other states, West Virginia relied on inpatient psychiatric hospitals for public mental health treatment, many of which were built in the late 1800s. The state started shutting many of these hospitals down in the 1980s and 1990s.

 

One of the state's nineteenth-century hospitals remains standing as a tourist attraction, but the state now operates only two psychiatric hospitals, which are housed in more modern facilities: Mildred Mitchell-Bateman Hospital in Huntington and William R. Sharpe, Jr. Hospital in Weston.

 

Public outpatient mental health services in West Virginia are managed on the state level by the Bureau for Behavioral Health within the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources. Services are provided by a network of 13 CBHCs overseen by the BBH Office of Adult Services, which also manages the state's mental health crisis response system. The Office of Health Facilities operates the state's remaining psychiatric hospitals. 

 

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), only 47 percent of people in West Virginia who have mental health conditions get treatment for them. One reason for the care gap is that people aren't aware of their options for affordable mental health care, including community behavioral health centers. You can help change these statistics by reaching out and using your local mental health resources to get the care you need.


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