Court Program Reveals Great News For Local Counties
Thursday was a great day in Wetzel County as Judge David W. Hummel, members of the Second Judicial Circuit Treatment Court Team, and Northwood Health Systems held an open house event in celebration of making a positive change in the community and beyond.
Northwood Health Systems located at 747 2nd Street, New Martinsville, W.Va., was over flowing with those interested and dedicated to helping people suffering from Additiction and Behavioral Health issues. Also in attendance were several who are now attending the treatment center.
One lady said it has made a significant difference in not only her life style, but the way she views society as a whole. “I no longer look at things the same way. Before, all I was interested in was finding my next fix. Now because of therapy, group sessions, knowing the proper use of medications, and realizing the importance of family, I have made my mind up to recover and lead a productive life. I don’t see law enforcement as my enemy, I realize they are my friends, the same holds true for the Judge who put me behind bars.”
By looking at the number of people involved in trying to reach these people instead of just locking them up and throwing away the key, it’s easy to see help is there if they’re willing to accept it. This has been a project for Judge Hummel for several years. “People hear the words Drug or Treatment Court, but I wanted them to see it for themselves to know that it’s here and it’s REAL. So, I decided to hold an Open House Event at the place where our participants receive their treatment – Northwood Behavioral Health Services in New Martinsville, West Virginia. This was an opportunity for Prosecuting and Defense Attorneys, law enforcement, state and county leaders, as well as individuals from the community to tour the wonderful facility and meet the people from both the Court Team and the Counseling Team,” Hummel said.
The Adult Treatment Court program is a 52 week long, court sanctioned intensive outpatient program designed as an alternative for criminal offenders over the age of 18 with substance use treatment needs. The primary goal is to keep offenders healthy and out of prison by providing them with treatment in a supervised setting.
Judge Hummel said, “What started as a simple idea in my mind – partnering with a behavioral health center – is being described as innovative and revolutionary by many throughout the state. The partnership has the attention of state officials, and I hope to take our way of doing things better state-wide. Treatment Court truly saves livesit saves families.”
The program provides participants with the opportunity to transition through three treatment phases while remaining in their community under supervision. The three phases are designed to offer participants with the support and clinical struture needed for recovery. Treatment includes individual counseling, group counseling, case management, drug screening, transportation, vocational training support, and other supportive services including crisis stabilization, detox, medication assisted treatment, physchiatic servies, medication management, opioid overdose, and more.
Several factors have to be considered to be accepted, including evaluation through a treatment planning meeting conducted by the Northwood clincial team, and an assessment by the clinical team which will include a meeting with the participant, a phychologist, and a Masters level therapist.
The Adult treatment court program is operated out of Northwood’s primary addiction treament facility in Wetzel County, with operating hours Moday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Transportation to and from treatment is available to program participants who live within the transport area of service.
Participants are expected to attend all scheduled services per their treatment plan. Absences will be discussed with the Adult Treatment court staff and the participant. The adult drug court probation officer will be notified of all absences.
The different phases of the treatment plan are to advance the participant towards total recovery. However after completing the 52 week structured program, participants will be encouraged to continue engaging in outpatient treatment services for individual after care. An after care plan will continually be developed with participants as they move through the program. Participants will develop a relapse prevention plan, and are encouraged to continue with supportive services and individual professional counseling to address ongoing needs.
“It was quite humbling to see the overwhelming number of people to took me up on the invitation. Nearly one hundred people came to the Open House Event and took their time in getting to know more about the people who work together to make Treatment Court the valued asset that it is in our communities,” Judge Hummel added.
In a short discussion with Wetzel County Sheriff Mike Koontz, he said he’s excited about what this means to Wetzel County. “We are very busy fighting drug problems through out the county. While this won’t be a complete fix, it will certainly help alleviate some of the second and third time offenders. We can offer help now, maybe save some lives, instead of just sending them away and waiting on them to get out and commit another crime.”
Others attending the event included Judge Jeffery D. Cramer, Tyler County Prosecuter D. Luke Furbee, Tyler County Magistrates Mary Dotson and Michael Griffin, Wetzel County Magistrates Tom Sheperd and Judith Kootnz, Judge Robert Hicks, Wetzel and Tyler County probation officers, Northwood Health Systems personel, and several law enforcement officers.