The opinion of the court was delivered by: Harold A. Baker United States District Judge
This cause is before the court for consideration of the defendants' motion for summary judgment [d/e 42, 47].
The plaintiff has one surviving claim: that Defendant Dr. Stanley Sims and Defendant Wexford Health Sources, Inc. violated plaintiff's Eighth Amendment rights when they were deliberately indifferent to his serious medical needs. The plaintiff claims the defendants failed to provide care for a serious knee injury. All other claims and defendants have been dismissed See September 21, 2004 Court Order.
On February 9, 2006, the court informed the plaintiff that his response to the motion for summary judgment made reference to exhibits, but none were attached to his response. The court also informed that defendants that they needed to provide affidavits from medical personnel verifying and interpreting the medical records and providing evidence about any medical care the plaintiff did receive. Both sides were given additional time to respond to the court order and additional time to respond to additional filings by their opponent.
The defendants have now filed a revised motion for summary judgment. The defendants' revised motion for summary judgment is not a supplement to the first motion, but an entirely new dispositive motion. Therefore the court will deny the first motion as moot.
The plaintiff filed a motion asking for additional time to file a response. Although the court specifically stated that the plaintiff's response must be filed on or before February 27, 2006, the plaintiff said he was confused on the due date. A subsequent clerk of the court entry was somewhat confusing. Therefore, the court gave the pro se plaintiff one last brief extension. The response deadline has come and gone and the plaintiff has not filed any additional response.
The following facts were taken from the defendants' motion for summary judgment and exhibits as well as plaintiff's response. The plaintiff underwent arthrosporic knee surgery while he was still an inmate at Pontiac Correctional Center. The surgery took place on June 20, 2002. The plaintiff was released back to Pontiac Correctional Center for follow-up care.
On July 3, 2002, the plaintiff was transferred to Western Illinois Correctional Center. Shortly after his arrival, Defendant Dr. Sims evaluated the plaintiff's knee condition. Dr. Sims was the Medical Director at Western Illinois Correctional Center. The plaintiff was not on medications when he arrived at the facility. The plaintiff did have a "one and a half-inch built up heel/shoe for his left leg" which he was allowed to keep. (Sims Aff., p. 2) The plaintiff was also recommended for a low bunk and gallery assignment.
The plaintiff complained about knee pain in July of 2002 and again in January of 2003. On both occasions, the plaintiff was evaluated by Dr. Sims. Dr. Sims says he reviewed the plaintiff's medical history before formulating a care plan for the plaintiff. According to the medical records, the plaintiff did very well with the surgery. "His long-term prognosis was guarded due to the likelihood that he would develop more changes and more symptoms as time when on" according to the doctor who performed the surgery. (Sims Aff, p. 2) The surgeon noted that other areas of the plaintiff's knee were in excellent shape and he did very well before he was discharged.
On July 9, 2002, Dr. Sims says the plaintiff insisted that he be allowed to see an orthopaedic surgeon and stated he needed a new orthopedic show. Dr. Sims says he examined the plaintiff's knee and found that he did have some tenderness. The plaintiff did not have any swelling or other noticeable problems. Dr. Sims states that it was his medical opinion that "orthopedic arthroscopy findings were negative for any further orthopedic intervention at that time." (Dr. Sims Aff, p. 2) The doctor noted that the plaintiff had just been seen by an orthopedic surgeon on June 20, 2002. The doctor did order a pain reliever such as Motrin for the plaintiff and provided a cane which the plaintiff refused.
Dr. Sims says he next saw the plaintiff on July 30, 3003. The plaintiff was demanding a new shoe, knee placement surgery and medication refills. The doctor told the plaintiff that he was not in need of surgery. The doctor did order medication, a cane and ordered additional testing.
The next time the doctor saw the plaintiff was August 19, 2002. The plaintiff stated he had heard a pop and then experienced severe pain in his knee. Dr. Sims examined the plaintiff's knee and found no change in his skin color nor swelling. The doctor did detect some tenderness near plaintiff's knee. The doctor prescribed medication and admitted the plaintiff to the infirmary for observation. ...