United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
MICHAEL J. REAGAN U.S. Chief District Judge
Ramon Clark, an inmate who is currently in the custody of the
Illinois Department of Corrections (“IDOC”),
brings this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §
1983 for deprivations of his constitutional rights at
Pinckneyville Correctional Center
(“Pinckneyville”) and Centralia Correctional
Center (“Centralia”). (Doc. 1). In the Complaint,
Plaintiff claims that he was denied adequate medical care for
a testicular mass at both facilities. His condition was
neither properly diagnosed nor treated. (Doc. 1, pp. 3-11).
As a result, he suffered from unnecessary pain. Plaintiff now
sues Wexford Health Sources, Inc. (“Wexford”),
his prison doctors (Shah, Santos, Garcia, and Doe), and
several supervisory officials (Mueller, Krebs, Zelasko,
Brown, and Benton) for violations of his rights under the
Eighth Amendment. Id. Plaintiff seeks declaratory
judgment, monetary damages, and injunctive relief against
them. (Doc. 1, pp. 10-11).
Review Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A
Complaint is subject to preliminary review under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A. Under § 1915A, the Court is required to
promptly screen prisoner complaints to filter out
nonmeritorious claims. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a). The Court
is required to dismiss any portion of the Complaint that is
legally frivolous, malicious, fails to state a claim upon
which relief may be granted, or asks for money damages from a
defendant who by law is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A(b). Plaintiff's Complaint is subject to
further review under this standard.
alleges that he was denied proper medical treatment for a
lump in his left testicle at Pinckneyville and Centralia in
2015-16. (Doc. 1, pp. 3-11). Medical providers at both
facilities recommended an ultrasound. Id. However,
Wexford would not approve the test. Id.
Consequently, the mass in Plaintiff's left testicle was
never properly diagnosed or treated and resulted in
significant, persistent pain. Id.
his incarceration at Pinckneyville, Plaintiff developed a
painful mass in his left testicle. (Doc. 1, pp. 3-4). He
notified medical staff about the condition and requested
testing to properly diagnose it. (Doc. 1, p. 3). Plaintiff
wanted to rule out the possibility of cancer.
response, Nurse Practitioner Angel Rector performed a manual
examination and confirmed the presence of a lump.
Id. She recommended an ultrasound to properly
diagnose his condition. Id. Plaintiff waited
“weeks” for the ultrasound before learning that
Wexford would not approve it. Id.
examining Plaintiff, an unidentified doctor (“John
Doe”) scheduled him for a follow-up appointment six
months later. (Doc. 1, p. 3). Plaintiff met with the
prison's “crisis team” and was scheduled for
an earlier appointment with the same doctor. (Doc. 1, pp.
3-4). Doctor Doe met with Plaintiff and, like the nurse
practitioner, discovered a mass in his left testicle during a
manual examination. Doctor Doe opined that the mass
“might be [e]pididymitis, ” but it was
probably not testicular cancer. (Doc. 1, p. 4). Doctor Doe
decided that no treatment was necessary. Id.
Plaintiff was instead scheduled for a follow-up appointment
six months later. Id.
filed an emergency grievance with Warden Jacqueline
Lashbrook. (Doc. 1, p. 4). In the grievance, he described the
denial of medical care for his condition in detail. The
warden “ordered that the grievance be expedited.”
Id. However, it was eventually denied by an
unidentified grievance officer, Warden Lashbrook, and
Administrative Review Board (“ARB”) Member Sherry
Benton. (Doc. 1, pp. 3-4). Before attending his follow-up
appointment at Pinckneyville, Plaintiff transferred to
Centralia on May 4, 2016. Id.
days of his arrival at the prison, he notified medical staff
about his testicular mass. (Doc. 1, p. 4). Doctor Shah
examined Plaintiff on May 8, 2016. Id. After
performing still another manual examination, the doctor
confirmed the presence of a mass in Plaintiff's left
testicle. (Doc. 1, pp. 4-5). Doctor Shah then stated,
“You were recently seen by the doctor at Pinckneyville
and he recommended that you be examined in six months so get
out of here.” (Doc. 1, p. 5). Doctor Shah also denied
Plaintiff's request for pain medication. Id.
filed an emergency grievance with Warden Mueller the same
day. (Doc. 1, p. 5). Warden Mueller ordered that the
grievance be expedited. Id. After investigating the
matter, Grievance Officer Zelasko concluded that
Plaintiff's “medical concerns [we]re being
addressed by the facility's healthcare staff.”
Id. The emergency grievance was denied on May 19,
2016, by Zelasko and Mueller. Id.
informed Centralia's medical staff that the mass was
causing pain that radiated from his left testicle through his
left leg. (Doc. 1, p. 5). He was scheduled to meet with
Doctor Santos, who confirmed the presence of a mass in
Plaintiff's left testicle by performing a manual
examination. Id. The doctor agreed that the mass was
likely epididymitis and required no treatment. Id.
When Plaintiff complained of tenderness and pain, Doctor
Santos recommended masturbation instead of pain medication.
filed another emergency grievance with Warden Mueller on
August 11, 2016. (Doc. 1, p. 6). The warden again ordered
that the grievance be expedited. Id. While the
grievance was being processed, Plaintiff informed medical
staff that he was still experiencing severe pain.
Id. In response to this complaint, Doctor Garcia
examined Plaintiff on August 17, 2016. Id. The
doctor suspected an infection and prescribed Plaintiff
Levofloxacin (500 mg), an antibiotic used to treat a ...