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W.Va. receives $12.4M for substance abuse, mental health

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia received two federal grants totaling $12.4 million for substance abuse prevention and treatment and for mental health services.

U.S. Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito announced the grants to the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Services on Monday in a joint news release.

Both senators noted that the pandemic brought increased isolation and hardship for those suffering from mental health issues and opioid addiction. About $7.9 million was awarded for substance abuse prevention and treatment and $4.5 million for mental health aid.

“For over a year, West Virginians have adapted to a new way of life, which has isolated many of our fellow West Virginians from their family, friends and loved ones,” Manchin said in a statement.

Capito added that the coronavirus is not the only health crisis: “With the rise in opioid overdose deaths and substance abuse as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, our country and state is facing an unprecedented level of challenging circumstances.”