CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A federal judge has ruled that five disabled West Virginians should get the same amount of funding they got before cuts were made to the state’s Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities waiver program.

U.S. District Judge Thomas Johnston recently issued a preliminary injunction ordering the state Department of Health and Human Resources to reinstate the disabled West Virginians’ individualized budgets to the amounts they received in 2014, The Charleston Gazette-Mail (http://bit.ly/2civu1J) reported.

Attorneys representing the waiver recipients filed a request for injunctive relief against the DHHR last year to make the agency reverse course on cuts to the program.

The judge didn’t rule on whether the case would be certified as a class action, which would allow more people affected to join the lawsuit.

“We’re very pleased with the court order,” said attorney Lydia Milnes. “We think it shows a good understanding of the issues and challenges facing our clients. We’re looking forward to a further ruling on our motion for class certification.”

The program provides disabled Medicaid recipients in West Virginia money for in-home services and community-based programs.

Jeremiah Samples, deputy secretary for the DHHR, said in a statement that the department would comply with the order.

“The DHHR has already implemented many of the changes outlined in the court’s order, and it will continue exploring strategies to make further appropriate modifications,” Samples said.


Information from: The Charleston Gazette-Mail, http://wvgazettemail.com.