United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
NANCY J. ROSENSTENGEL, District Judge.
Plaintiff Jaryan Gills, an inmate currently housed in Lawrence Correctional Center, brings this action for deprivations of his constitutional rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff takes issue with the medical care he received (or was denied) while housed at Stateville Correctional Center, Menard Correctional Center, and Lawrence Correctional Center. The events at issue span from March 2011 to the present.
Plaintiff's initial complaint (Doc. 1) was dismissed without prejudice because Plaintiff failed to state a viable claim against any named defendant ( see Doc. 7). His first amended complaint (Doc. 8) was similarly dismissed without prejudice (Doc. 13).
Plaintiff's second amended complaint (Doc. 15) is now before the Court for preliminary review pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, which provides:
(a) Screening. - The court shall review, before docketing, if feasible or, in any event, as soon as practicable after docketing, a complaint in a civil action in which a prisoner seeks redress from a governmental entity or officer or employee of a governmental entity.
(b) Grounds for Dismissal. - On review, the court shall identify cognizable claims or dismiss the complaint, or any portion of the complaint, if the complaint -
(1) is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim on which relief may be granted; or
(2) seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief.
An action or claim is frivolous if "it lacks an arguable basis either in law or in fact." Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). An action fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted if it does not plead "enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face." Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007). The claim of entitlement to relief must cross "the line between possibility and plausibility." Id. at 557.
The Second Amended Complaint
According to the second amended complaint, when Plaintiff entered the custody of the Illinois Department of Corrections in 2011, he was suffering from an inguinal hernia and had four bullets lodged in his body. Over time, the bullets have shifted position and are now causing symptoms such as pain and numbness, and Plaintiff's hernia has become a chronic problem. Because surgery has not been performed, Plaintiff has remained in pain and, to a certain extent, been debilitated. He has had to walk up and down stairs to get to higher galleries and climb up and down from a high bunk (although since mid-2013 he has been housed on 2-gallery, given a low bunk permit, and prescribed a hernia belt).
The Court infers from the complaint that Plaintiff considers the many alleged incidents of deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs (listed in 33 separate paragraphs of the second amended complaint) a continuing violation of his rights. Plaintiff asserts that there is a conspiracy among prison officials, healthcare staff, and Wexford Health Sources, the contracted healthcare provider for the Illinois Department of Corrections ("IDOC"). He also alleges that Wexford Health Sources and the IDOC have policies and practices of making medical decisions based solely upon cost considerations, including denying surgery for hernias.
Based on the allegations of the second amended complaint, including Plaintiff's own enumeration of three broad categories of claims, the Court recognizes the following claims:
Count 1: Between March 2011 and the present, all Defendants were deliberately indifferent to Plaintiff's serious medical needs, including pain, in violation of the Eighth Amendment;
Count 2: The IDOC and Wexford Health Sources had policies and practices denying Plaintiff medical care for his serious medical needs, in violation of the Eighth Amendment; and
Count 3: All Defendants conspired to deny Plaintiff medical care for his serious medical needs, in ...