United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
M. YANDLE, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Adam Pegues, an inmate in the custody of the Illinois
Department of Corrections (“IDOC”), filed this
lawsuit pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, alleging that his
constitutional rights were violated while he was incarcerated
at Lawrence Correctional Center (“Lawrence”).
Specifically, Plaintiff alleges Defendants failed to comply
with the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”)
and were deliberately indifferent to his serious medical
needs. Following threshold review, Plaintiff proceeds on the
Count 1:Eighth Amendment deliberate
indifference claim against Defendant Duncan, for ignoring
Plaintiff's request for help in obtaining medical care;
Count 2:Eighth Amendment deliberate
indifference claim against Defendants Coe, and Kimmel, for
denying or delaying medical care to Plaintiff;
Count 3:Eighth Amendment deliberate
indifference claim against Wexford Health Sources, for
maintaining policies that resulted in the denial and/or delay
of medical care to Plaintiff;
Count 4:Claims under the ADA and
Rehabilitation Act against Director Baldwin (official
capacity only), for denial of accommodations such as a
wheelchair attendant, showers, and access to gym and physical
matter is currently before the Court on the Motion for
Summary Judgment filed by Defendants Duncan and Baldwin (Doc.
129) and the Motion for Summary Judgment filed by Defendants
Coe, Kimmel and Wexford (Doc. 131). Plaintiff filed a
Response to each motion (Docs. 137, 138). Defendants Coe,
Kimmel and Wexford filed a Reply to Plaintiff's
Supplemental Statement of Material Facts (Doc. 139). For the
following reasons, Defendants' motions are
Pegues was transferred to Lawrence in March 2014
(Plaintiff's Deposition, Doc. 130-2 at 6).
Defendant Dr. John Coe is a medical doctor who served as the
Medical Director at Lawrence from 2013 to July 31, 2016, as
an employee of Wexford Health Sources, Inc. (Deposition of
Dr. John Coe, Doc. 132-2).
Defendant Tammy Kimmel was a licensed practical nurse at
Lawrence and an employee of Wexford Health Sources Inc.,
during the material time period referenced in Plaintiff's
Complaint (Deposition of Tammy Kimmel, Doc. 132-3).
Wexford Health Sources, Inc. entered into a contract with
IDOC to provide medical services to IDOC inmates, including
Lawrence (Doc. 1).
Defendant Duncan was the warden at Lawrence and is not a
medical professional (130-1 at 1).
Pegues complained of non-specific abdominal pain prior to his
transfer to Lawrence (Doc. 130-2 at 11).
x-ray and sonogram of his abdomen performed prior to his
arrival at Lawrence were normal (Id.).
Pegues alleges that he spoke to Defendant Duncan about being
in pain on March 22, 2014. Pegues told Duncan “about
the blood in the stool and the stomach pains I was having and
it is hard to eat and stuff like that, and I told him I need
medical attention, could he get me some medical
attention” (Id. at 45).
Pegues received medical treatment on March 24, 2014; two days
after he alleges that he spoke to Warden Duncan. He was seen
in the Health Care Unit (“HCU”) and was referred
to see Dr. Coe (Plaintiff's Medical Records, Doc. 130-3
Coe saw Pegues for the first time on March 25, 2014 for
complaints of abdominal pain (Id. at 1).
March 25, 2014, Pegues' abdomen was tender to deep
palpation. Dr. Coe prescribed Enulose and Fiberlax (both
laxatives), and scheduled Pegues for a return visit in one
week for further evaluation (Id.).
When Pegues returned on April 1, 2014, he reported that his
stools had not loosened. Dr. Coe again reviewed
Plaintiff's prior records, including the February 2014
sonogram report (Id. at 3).
Coe planned to admit Pegues to the infirmary when possible to
evaluate for blood in his stool (Id.).
May 15, 2014, Dr. Coe reviewed Pegues' most recent lab
results, which were normal, and asked that Pegues be
scheduled for a visit in the HCU so that he could discuss the
results with him (Doc. 93-4 at 2).
Coe discussed Pegues' lab results with him on May 20,
2014, and scheduled him for another visit in one week. On May
28, Dr. Coe noted normal bowel sounds with some tenderness in
Pegues' left mid to lower abdomen. He added Bentyl, a
drug designed to treat bowel spasms/Irritable Bowel Syndrome,
to Pegues' medication regimen. Dr. Coe scheduled him to
return in two weeks (Id. at 2-3).
June 5, 2014, Pegues requested additional testing be
performed. Dr. Coe explained that further testing was not
clinically indicated until he had completed further
June 7, 2014, Pegues returned to the HCU complaining of
abdominal pain. He stated, “no one will help me”
and reported that he had a bowel movement earlier that day
that was hard as a brick (Affidavit of Sherry Collins, LPN,
Doc. 93-2 at 1).
Pegues stated that “no one was doing their jobs”
and that “no one was taking him seriously” but
would do so when he was dead. Nurse Collins noted a recent
visit with Dr. Coe on June 5, 2014 and scheduled Pegues for a
visit with the doctor. (Id. at 1-2).
Pegues was admitted to the infirmary on June 20, 2014. On
admission, Dr. Coe performed a complete physical exam. A
rectal exam was negative for blood. Dr. Coe added
nortriptyline (Pamelor), an antidepressant, and Tylenol to
Pegues' medication regimen, and ordered inspection of his
stools to check for blood (Doc. 93-4 at 3).
During Pegues' admission to the infirmary from June
20-23, 2014, his stool was regularly checked for blood, each
time with a negative finding (Doc. 93-2 at 2).
Nurse Collins saw Pegues in the infirmary on June 22, 2014.
His abdomen was soft and not distended. Pegues was able to
eat his entire lunch tray, walk around his cell normally and
sit upright to read a book, despite rating his pain at 8/10
Coe discharged Pegues from the infirmary with continued
prescriptions for Enulose, Fiberlax, Tylenol and Pamelor
(Doc. 93-4 at 3).
Coe saw Pegues again on July 17, 2014. He complained that the
Pamelor caused headaches and nausea, and that the Bentyl was
ineffective. Pegues requested a wheelchair, but Dr. Coe
declined the request due to the observations of medical and
prison staff members that Pegues was able to walk normally.
Pegues disputes that he was able to walk normally. Dr. Coe
continued Pegues' prescription for Enulose, and scheduled
him to be followed in the General Medicine Clinic
(Id. at 3-4).
August 6, 2014, Pegues returned to the HCU complaining of
pain with urination. Dr. Coe performed a physical exam, which
was normal except for the same mild tenderness in Pegues'
left lower quadrant. A urinalysis was negative for blood or
any other objective finding consistent with Pegues'
subjective complaints (Id. at 4).
When Dr. Coe next saw Pegues on September 17, 2014, he
continued to complain of abdominal pain. His bowel sounds
were normal. Pegues also complained of generalized back pain
and an inability to walk. Dr. Coe performed a complete
neurological exam, which was completely normal. Pegues'
lab results demonstrated that he had high cholesterol, so Dr.
Coe prescribed Simvastatin and continued all other orders
Coe next saw Pegues on November 5, 2014. He had complained to
the nurse of pain in his back, abdomen and penis, and asked
for a wheelchair because it hurt to walk. Dr. Coe performed
another physical exam, and found some mild tenderness in
Pegues' lower back, but Pegues denied abdominal
tenderness. Dr. Coe scheduled Pegues for labs in February
2015 and a follow-up visit in March 2015 (Id.).
Pegues was seen by the nursing staff in sick call on November
12, 1014, November 23, 2014, and December 3, 2014 with
complaints of generalized pain (Id.).
December 12, 2014, Dr. Coe saw Pegues for his continued
complaints. A physical exam was again normal. Dr. Coe ordered
a series of lab tests and scheduled a return visit thereafter
(Id. at 4-5).
When Pegues returned on January 26, 2015, Dr. Coe noted that
his urinalysis was positive for a small amount of blood and
protein, with a slightly elevated sedimentation rate and an
elevated creatinine value. Dr. Coe ordered a follow-up