United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM & ORDER
PHIL GILBERT UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Spencer Martin, an inmate in the Illinois Department of
Corrections (“IDOC”) who is currently
incarcerated at Menard Correctional Center
(“Menard”), brings this action for alleged
violations of his constitutional rights by persons acting
under the color of state law under 28 U.S.C. § 1983 in
connection with alleged deliberate indifference to his
medical condition. He seeks monetary relief.
case is now before the Court for preliminary review of the
Complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. Under Section
1915A, the Court is required to screen prisoner complaints to
filter out non-meritorious claims. See 28 U.S.C. §
1915A(a). Any portion of a 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 must be
dismissed. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b). At this juncture, the
factual allegations of the pro se complaint are to be
liberally construed. Rodriguez v. Plymouth Ambulance
Serv., 577 F.3d 816, 821 (7th Cir. 2009).
makes the following allegations in the Complaint (Doc. 1):
Plaintiff complained about ongoing shoulder and neck pain to
Dr. Siddiqui, a doctor at Menard, in June 2017.
(Id., p. 7). He was prescribed ibuprofen.
(Id.). Over the course of several months, he
informed Siddiqui and Nurse Practitioner Zimmerman that he
was continuing to have pain, that it was interfering with his
daily activities, and that the ibuprofen was ineffective.
(Id.). In June 2018, Siddiqui prescribed Voltaren,
which was similarly ineffective. (Id.). Siddiqui
informed him there was nothing further to be done.
(Id.). Additionally, Siddiqui and Zimmerman refused
to recommend him for a front-cuff permit despite his
condition. (Id., p. 8).
later was sent for a series of MRIs by another doctor
beginning in October 2018. (Id.). Both Siddqui and
Zimmerman subsequently told Plaintiff he would require
surgery, but “still prescribed nothing for
[Plaintiff’s] pain.” (Id., p. 9). On May
4, 2019, Plaintiff was told by Zimmerman that he was being
scheduled for surgery. (Id.).
Plaintiff claims that Siddiqui and Zimmerman delayed
effective treatment of his neck and shoulder pain, persisting
with treatments that they knew were ineffective. Plaintiff
further alleges that the delay in treatment was part of a
“pattern and practice” of delaying needed
surgeries to Menard inmates in order to “achieve
Wexford’s cost cutting measures.” (Id.,
on the allegations in the Complaint, the Court finds it
convenient to organize the pro se action
into a single Count:
Count 1: Eighth Amendment claim for deliberate indifference
to a serious medical condition against Defendants
parties and the Court will use these designations in all
future pleadings and orders, unless otherwise directed by a
judicial officer of this Court. Any other claim that is
mentioned in the First Amended Complaint but not addressed
herein is considered dismissed without prejudice as
inadequately pled under Twombly.
first claims fall under the general umbrella of deliberate
indifference to a serious medical need. The Supreme Court has
recognized that deliberate indifference to the serious
medical needs of prisoners may constitute cruel and unusual
punishment under the Eighth Amendment. Estelle v.
Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 104 (1976); Carlson v.
Green, 446 U.S. 14 (1980). To prevail on a claim for
deliberate indifference to a serious medical need, there are
“two high hurdles, which every inmate-plaintiff must
clear.” Dunigan ex rel. Nyman v. Winnebago
Cnty., 165 F.3d 587, 590 (7th Cir. 1999). First, the
plaintiff must demonstrate he suffered from an objectively
serious medical condition. Id. at 591-92. Second,
the plaintiff must establish the individual prison officials
were deliberately indifferent to that condition. Id.
medical condition was diagnosed by a physician as requiring
surgical treatment and are therefore sufficiently serious to
support a claim. Gutierrez v. Peters, 111 F.3d 1364,
1373 (7th Cir. 1997) (defining serious medical need to
include those conditions that have been diagnosed by a
physician as ...