United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Z. LEE UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Jovon Scott (“Plaintiff”) brings this civil
rights action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. At all times
relevant to this action, he was incarcerated at Stateville
Correctional Center (“Stateville”) in the custody
of the Illinois Department of Corrections
(“IDOC”), and received medical care from Wexford
Health Sources, Inc. (“Wexford”). He claims that,
during this period, Wexford employees Megan Pinas and Dr.
Saleh Obaisi (“the Wexford Defendants”), as well
as IDOC employees Marcus Hardy, Stanley Jenkins, Jason Berry,
and Karen Fryer (“the IDOC Defendants”)
(collectively, “Defendants”),  were deliberately
indifferent to his serious medical need in violation of the
Eighth Amendment. The Wexford Defendants and the IDOC
Defendants have moved separately for summary judgment. For
the reasons that follow, the Wexford Defendants' motion
 is granted, and the IDOC Defendants' motion  is
granted in part and denied in part.
District of Illinois Local Rule 56.1
District of Illinois Local Rule (“LR”) 56.1
establishes a procedure for presenting facts on summary
judgment. Under LR 56.1(a)(3), the movant must submit
“a statement of material facts as to which the moving
party contends there is no genuine issue and that entitle the
moving party to a judgment as a matter of law.” LR
56.1(a)(3). In turn, the opposing party must file “a
concise response to the movant's statement.” LR
56.1(b)(3). This response must consist of “numbered
paragraphs, each corresponding to and stating a concise
summary of the paragraph to which it is directed.” LR
56.1(b)(3)(A). In addition, the opponent must
“respon[d] to each numbered paragraph in the moving
party's statement, including, in the case of any
disagreement, specific references to the affidavits, parts of
the record, and other supporting materials relied
upon.” LR 56.1(b)(3)(B). Finally, the opponent must
submit “a statement, consisting of short numbered
paragraphs, of any additional facts that require the denial
of summary judgment.” LR 56.1(b)(3)(C).
Plaintiff, who is represented by counsel, failed to respond
to Defendants' LR 56.1(a)(3) statements of facts with a
response as dictated by LR 56.1(b)(3). In addition, Plaintiff
did not submit a statement of additional facts under LR
56.1(b)(3)(C). Rather, Plaintiff filed two response briefs
which contradict certain factual assertions in
Defendants' statements of facts and assert additional
facts. Plaintiff has therefore failed to comply with LR 56.1,
and the Court is entitled to admit Defendants' statements
of facts and disregard any additional facts Plaintiff has
asserted. See, e.g., Thornton v. M7 Aerospace
LP, 796 F.3d 757, 769 (7th Cir. 2015) (affirming a
district court's decision to admit defendants'
uncontested statement of facts and to “disregard[ ]
evidentiary documents because a required statement of facts
was not filed”); Cichon v. Exelon Generation
Co., 401 F.3d 803, 810 (7th Cir. 2005). As such, the
Court will accept Defendants' “uncontroverted
version of the facts to the extent that it is supported by
evidence in the record.” Keeton v. Morningstar,
Inc., 667 F.3d 877, 880 (7th Cir. 2012). That said,
insofar as the materials Defendants have submitted do not
comply with LR 56.1 or do not otherwise indicate that summary
judgment is warranted, the Court does not deem
Plaintiff's failure to file a rule-compliant response
dispositive. See Perez v. Thorntons, Inc., 731 F.3d
699, 706 (7th Cir. 2013) (“Where the moving party has
undermined its own [LR] 56.1 assertion through the
presentation of contradictory assertions and evidence, a
nonmovant's ‘admission' of the movant's
assertion is not decisive.”).
December 21, 2012, while incarcerated at Stateville,
Plaintiff awoke due to an irritation in his left ear. Wexford
Defs.' LR 56.1(a)(3) Stmt. ¶ 8, ECF No. 98; IDOC
Defs.' LR 56.1(a)(3) Stmt. ¶ 7, ECF No. 103. He
believes the irritation was caused by a cockroach that had
crawled into his ear. Wexford Defs.' LR 56.1(a)(3) Stmt.
¶ 8; IDOC Defs.' LR 56.1(a)(3) Stmt. ¶¶ 2,
7. As a result, Plaintiff claims that he suffered pain in his
ear and hearing loss. IDOC Defs.' LR 56.1(a)(3) Stmt.
¶ 2; id., Ex. 2 (“Pl.'s Dep.”),
to Plaintiff, he informed various prison officials and
medical personnel about his condition. See Id.
¶¶ 9-18. First, immediately after the incident on
December 21, he informed an officer of what had occurred and
requested medical attention. See Id. ¶ 9;
Pl.'s Dep. at 10:22-24. The officer advised him to
“put in for [a] nurse sick call.” Pl.'s Dep.
at 11:2. The next day, December 22, he continued to
complain to prison officials about his ear condition.
Id. ¶¶ 10-11. He “notified the
medical technician who was passing meds out” as well as
“pretty much [ ] everybody from the lieutenant to the
gallery officer.” Pl.'s Dep. at 20:15-18. He was
again instructed to submit a written request for treatment.
Id. at 20:9-14. On December 23, he repeated his
request for treatment to medical personnel passing out
medications, but he did not receive medical attention. IDOC
Defs.' LR 56.1(a)(3) Stmt. ¶ 13. His condition
purportedly worsened. On December 26, Plaintiff experienced
bleeding in his ear and claims that he removed fragments of
the cockroach from his ear with the help of his cellmate.
Id. ¶¶ 14-15. Plaintiff attests that he
showed the fragments to a lieutenant, who informed Plaintiff
that he would notify the health care unit, but Plaintiff
never received medical attention. Id. ¶¶
Plaintiff cannot remember specifically which officials he
spoke to on which dates during the period of December 21
through December 26, id. ¶¶ 9-11, 13,
16-17, Stanley Jenkins and Jason Berry, who served as
lieutenants while Plaintiff was incarcerated at Stateville,
and Karen Fryer, who served as a Stateville medical
technician, were among the individuals to whom he complained,
Pl.'s Dep. at 35:21-36:4; 37:4-10. In addition to these
complaints, Plaintiff alleges that he filed various
grievances during this time period and until he received
treatment, including an emergency grievance to Marcus Hardy
as warden on December 21. IDOC Defs.' LR 56.1(a)(3) Stmt.
also complained to a nurse who he believes was Megan Pinas.
Wexford Defs.' LR 56.1(a)(3) Stmt. ¶¶ 12-13. He
does not know whether the nurse was in fact Megan Pinas, but
other inmates told him that Megan was the name of the nurse
with whom he spoke. Id. On the occasion he spoke
with her, the nurse was passing out medications. Id.
¶ 13; see Pl.'s Dep. at 97:10-14,
98:16-99:8. As she passed by his cell, Plaintiff claims that
he yelled out to her, “I'm trying to be seen. I
have a medical question.” Wexford Defs.' LR
56.1(a)(3) Stmt. ¶ 13. The nurse instructed him to
submit a written request for treatment. Id.
not until January 9, 2013, that Plaintiff received medical
attention for his ear. See Id. ¶ 15. On that
day, Dr. Saleh Obaisi examined Plaintiff's ear, using an
otoscope to “get good light with magnification, ”
and found no damage to the ear or eardrum. Id.
¶ 17. Based on Plaintiff's report that he performed
regular self-cleaning of his ears, Dr. Obaisi determined that
Plaintiff's report of pain and swelling could be the
result of an infection, or alternatively, inflammation
without an infection. Id. ¶¶ 18-19. There
is no evidence properly before the Court that Plaintiff
complained of hearing loss,  and Dr. Obaisi testified that he
did not. Id., Ex. B (“Obaisi Dep.”), at
19:10-14. Based on his examination, Dr. Obaisi prescribed
Plaintiff an antibiotic. Id. ¶ 19. The
antibiotic was effective. When Dr. Obaisi saw Plaintiff again
on February 2, 2013, his pain and swelling had decreased.
Id. ¶ 21. Again, there is no evidence properly
before the Court that Plaintiff complained of hearing loss at
this subsequent appointment.
these visits, Plaintiff saw health care professionals at
Stateville approximately forty more times before he was
transferred to Henry Hill Correctional Center (“Henry
Hill”) on October 13, 2014. Id. ¶ 23. He
did not seek treatment for his ear at any of these
appointments. Id. Upon being transferred to Henry
Hill, he did not report any issues with his ear until June
25, 2015. Id. ¶ 27. When he did eventually
complain of ear pain, medical officials at Henry Hill
prescribed antibiotics and instructed him to cease inserting
objects into his ear. Id. ¶¶ 27-28.
Plaintiff maintains that he suffers from hearing loss and
pain in his left ear to this day. See Id. ¶ 29.
court shall grant summary judgment if the movant shows that
there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the
movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). To survive summary judgment, the
nonmoving party must “do more than simply show that
there is some metaphysical doubt as to the material facts,
” Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio
Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586 (1986), and instead must
“establish some genuine issue for trial such that a
reasonable jury could return a verdict in her favor.”
Gordon v. FedEx Freight, Inc., 674 F.3d 769, 772-73
(7th Cir. 2012). In reviewing a motion for summary judgment,
the Court gives the nonmoving party “the benefit of
conflicts in the evidence and reasonable inferences that
could be drawn from it.” Grochocinski v. Mayer
Brown Rowe & Maw, LLP, 719 F.3d 785, 794 (7th Cir.
2013). The Court must not make credibility determinations or
weigh conflicting evidence. McCann v. Iroquois Mem'l
Hosp., 622 F.3d 745, 752 (7th Cir. 2010).
has filed suit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, claiming that
Defendants violated his Eighth Amendment rights by depriving
him of medical treatment for his ear condition. As with all
§ 1983 claims, Plaintiff must demonstrate, as a
preliminary matter, that Defendants were personally involved
in the events giving rise to his claim. Vance v.
Peters, 97 F.3d 987, 991 (7th Cir. 1996). This requires
“a causal connection or affirmative link between the
action complained about and the official sued.”
Arnett v. Webster, 658 F.3d 742, 759 (7th Cir.
2011). The Eighth Amendment, in turn, proscribes
“deliberate indifference to serious medical needs of
prisoners . . . whether the indifference is manifested by
prison doctors in their response to the prisoner's needs
or by prison guards in intentionally denying or delaying
access to medical care.” Estelle v. Gamble,
429 U.S. 97, 104-05 (1976) (citation and footnotes omitted).
To prove a claim of deliberate indifference to ...