W.Va. looks to contract out state's foster care and adoption system

West Virginia state officials are looking to contract out the state’s foster care and adoption system. (SOURCE: MGN)
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ & AP) -- West Virginia state officials are looking to contract out the state’s foster care and adoption system, according to officials with the state Department of Health and Human Resources.

They say the three-and-a-half-year contract is estimated to cost nearly $200 million per year – all subject to change as additional services are integrated into the program.

The DHHR source tells us that services that NECCO provides are independent of this contract and they would continue to provide services to the Bureau for Children and Families.

According to the DHHR, potential vendors may contact the West Virginia Purchasing Division for assistance with bidding. The procurement is open until Aug. 13.

The contract is scheduled to begin Jan. 1, 2020.

According to the Associated Press, the move is billed as a way to help streamline care for children in state custody and adoptive families.

The state's move to an MCO comes after lawmakers passed a bill requiring DHHR to transfer children in foster care to an MCO by January 2020. Click here for more.

This came after the Department of Justice threatened to sue the state over possible violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act within its foster system.