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Montana State Hospital administrator put on leave after less than a year on the job

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Posted at 8:04 AM, Mar 23, 2023

WARM SPRINGS — There’s more upheaval at the Montana State Hospital in Warm Springs as the interim administrator has been placed on leave less than a year after taking the helm of this struggling state-run psychiatric hospital.

The Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) confirmed Carter Anderson was placed on leave and David Culberson was named the new interim administrator. Anderson was brought in in April of 2022 to turn the facility around after it lost accreditation and has been under investigation for patient incidents, including deaths.

The health department refused to explain why Anderson was replaced.

A former employee who worked as an engineer at the facility and was recently fired said low morale continues to be a problem there.

“Understaffed, that’s what I would see, you had a few people trying to do a lot of work and it becomes frustrating and people eventually just leave and those are the good people you should be trying to keep,” said John Graves.

The health department said Culberson brings 30 years’ of experience to the state hospital.

“We look forward to benefitting from David’s leadership and expertise in inpatient behavioral health facility management as MSH continues its substantial reform journey after more than a decade of neglect,” according to a statement from DPHHS.