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Rodriguez v. Unknown Medical Staff at Tallahassee Memorial Hospital

United States District Court, N.D. Florida, Pensacola Division

February 5, 2018

ANDRES RODRIGUEZ, Plaintiff,
v.
UNKNOWN MEDICAL STAFF AT TALLAHASSEE MEMORIAL HOSPITAL, UNKNOWN MEDICAL STAFF AT CENTURION HEALTHCARE PROVIDER, and JULIE JONES, SECRETARY OF THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, Defendants.

          ORDER AND REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          CHARLES J. KAHN, JR., UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Plaintiff, proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis, brought this action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. The undersigned entered an order (doc. 16) advising that, based on a review of the complaint, it was evident the facts as presented failed to support a viable claim for relief under § 1983. The undersigned provided plaintiff an opportunity to clarify his allegations in an amended complaint.

         Plaintiff filed an amended complaint (doc. 19). The amended complaint, however, suffers from certain deficiencies that cannot be cured. Accordingly, the undersigned recommends that plaintiff's claims against 2 defendants, unknown medical staff at Tallahassee Memorial Hospital (“TMH”) and Julie Jones, Secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections (‘FDOC”), be dismissed. It appears that service on the third defendant, unknown medical staff at Centurion Health Care Provider (“Centurion”), is appropriate.[1]

         BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff is an inmate currently confined at Apalachee Correctional Institution in Sneads, Florida. At the time of the events giving rise to the amended complaint, plaintiff was confined at Franklin Correctional Institution (“FCI”). According to the amended complaint, on December 24, 2014, plaintiff was admitted to TMH, where he had an emergency appendectomy. When plaintiff awoke from the surgery, “[h]e discovered that the doctors had made a small incision in his lower right torso area, where they took out his organ and then placed a drainage tube in his side to drain out liquid.” Doc. 19 at p. 5. Plaintiff had a second emergency surgery the next day, apparently because of a ruptured abscess in his stomach. After the second surgery, plaintiff awoke to “discover that there was another small incision near his lower front abdomen and another drainage tube sticking out of that opening.” Doc. 19 at pp. 5-6. Plaintiff was medicated and aware of neither surgery until after it occurred.

         “After the 2nd surgery, Mr. Rodriguez stayed at TMH for 5-6 days.” Doc. 19 at p. 6. “Every 3 hours or so, the doctors injected Mr. Rodriguez with doses of morphine for the pain.” Doc. 19 at p. 6. “He was also given antibiotics one (1) time after each surgery, per doctors order.” Doc. 19 at p. 6. “Prior to the end of Mr. Rodriguez's hospital stay, the wound/staples from the 2nd surgery opened up. Yet, the doctors did not sew it back up due to the possibility of infection, they say.” Doc. 19 at p. 6. “At the end of Mr. Rodriguez's hospital stay, the doctors removed the tube from Mr. Rodriguez's front, as well as the tube on his side.” Doc. 19 at p. 6. “In the process of removing the side tube, one of the medical staff members yanked aggressively on the tube resulting in a rupture in Mr. Rodriguez's intestines, causing feces and other liquid to spill out his side.” Doc. 19 at p. 6. “The hospital staff stated that there were ‘complications, ' and then they used 8-9 towels to clean Mr. Rodriguez's side up.” Doc. 19 at p. 6. “After cleaning Mr. Rodriguez up, TMH sent him back to FCI, that same day.” Doc. 19 at p. 6.

         “On the day of Mr. Rodriguez's return to FCI, his stomach began to bleed out of the holes very badly, and his entire stomach and abdomen area began to swollen immensely.” Doc. 19 at p. 6. “A lot of brownish-reddish liquid began to pour out of the front and side holes where the previous incisions had been made, and Mr. Rodriguez complained to FCI staff about the serious pain he was experiencing.” Doc. 19 at p. 6. “Early the next morning, at around 4-5 a.m., the FCI doctor came by to check up on Mr. Rodriguez. After inspecting Mr. Rodriguez's swollen stomach and the leaking side and front incisions, the doctor told Mr. Rodriguez that he had to be sent back to the hospital immediately, due to the circumstances of his condition.” Doc. 19 at p. 6. “Mr. Rodriguez was then sent back to TMH a second time.” Doc. 19 at p. 6.

         “Upon arriving at the hospital, Mr. Rodriguez was cleaned up by hospital staff. They drew blood work, gave him antibiotics regularly (every 2-3 hours), gave him morphine for the pain (every 3 hours), and hooked up a colostomy bag to his side.” Doc. 19 at p. 7. “Mr. Rodriguez stayed in the hospital for 10-12 days then was sent to Lake Butler Reception Medical Center (RMC), ” where he stayed for 6 months. Doc. 19 at p. 7. “This was the timeframe necessary for his front incision to close back up, said the medical staff.” Doc. 19 at p. 7.

         “Within the first 2 weeks of Mr. Rodriguez's stay at RMC, it was told to him by medical staff that his kidneys were not working properly and had to be drained.” Doc. 19 at p. 7. “During the 1st month of Mr. Rodriguez's stay at RMC, a doctor by the name of Contarini said that there were many ‘complications' now with Mr. Rodriguez's insides that will require surgery, to fix. Dr. Contarini further informed Mr. Rodriguez that his appendix did not bust and should have never been removed.” Doc. 19 at p. 7. “Dr. Contarini then had Mr. Rodriguez sent to Jackson Hospital where he (Dr. Contarini) performed surgery on Mr. Rodriguez wherein he removed and replaced the colostomy bag. He was thereafter sent back to RMC.” Doc. 19 at p. 7.

         “After about 4 months at RMC, the doctors again had Mr. Rodriguez sent to Jackson Hospital this time to drain his kidneys.” Doc. 19 at p. 7. “It was told to Mr. Rodriguez by staff, that his kidneys were swollen because of an abscest and needed to be drained.” Doc. 19 at p. 7. “At Jackson Hospital, another tube was attached to Mr. Rodriguez in order to drain his kidneys. Mr. Rodriguez was thereafter given loritabs and other medication for pain and treatment, and was then sent back to RMC.” Doc. 19 at p. 7.

         “After about 5 months at RMC, the doctors had the bag and tubes removed from Mr. Rodriguez. From then on until the end of the 6-month period, Mr. Rodriguez remained at RMC and was given basic treatment and up-keep.” Doc. 19 at p. 7. “Medical staff there prescribed him 3 different types of meds (i.e. meds for pain, meds to help him use the bathroom, and a 3rd unknown med).” Doc. 19 at p. 7. “At the end of the 6-month period, Mr. Rodriguez was sent back to FCI, ” where he “was getting his prescribed meds regularly; all except the pain meds.” Doc. 19 at pp. 7-8.

         “After about 2 weeks or so, Mr. Rodriguez was sent back to TMH due to his constant complaints about pain. At TMH, the doctors discovered and had to drain, another abscest that had formed due to the colostomy bag.” Doc. 19 at p. 8. “Mr. Rodriguez remained at TMH for 4-5 days this time, then was sent to his current facility Apalachee Correctional Institution (ACI), on October 16, 2015.” Doc. 19 at p. 8.

         “At ACI, Mr. Rodriguez began psychological counseling, and began taking psyche meds due to the adverse psychological effects his injury was having on him.” Doc. 19 at p. 8. He “continued to receive all of the medications that was prescribed to him from RMC (3 different types) up until his prescription ran out 6 months-1 year after his arrival at ACI (i.e. between 4/16/2016-10/16/2016).” Doc. 19 at p. 8. “When his prescriptions ran out, Mr. Rodriguez put in a sick-call request to renew all 3 prescriptions. The medical department granted his request in-part (renewing his prescriptions for the defication pills and the unknown pills) and denying his request in-part (refusing to prescribe him any medication for pain).” Doc. 19 at p. 8. “The two renewed meds were prescribed until around July, 2017, but no pain medication has since been prescribed, even though Mr. Rodriguez's adverse health conditions still exist.” Doc. 19 at p. 8.

         “Between 10/16/2016 to the present date, Mr. Rodriguez has submitted 3-4 sick-call requests regarding his on-going pain and the lack of pain meds or further treatment.” Doc. 19 at p. 8. “Over the last year, Mr. Rodriguez has initiated 9 medical emergencies (5 within the last 3 months) regarding these same issues. Mr. Rodriguez has also grieved these issues to the Warden of ACI, as well as, to the Secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections; to no avail.” Doc. 19 at p. 8.

         “Lately, Mr. Rodriguez's psychological visits have increased as a result of the lack of action taken by the medical department.” Doc. 19 at pp. 8-9. “Over the past year, Mr. Rodriguez has been sent to RMC 3-4 times for photos and scans of his abdomen by medical staff, but no surgical procedures have been conducted nor has any medication for his pain been prescribed.” Doc. 19 at p. 9. “Last attempt by ACI to send Mr. Rodriguez to RMC for photos, Mr. Rodriguez had a psyche episode due [to] the perceived ongoing ‘back and forth' between the medical ...


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