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Mattingly v. Barnes

United States District Court, M.D. Florida, Jacksonville Division

March 27, 2018

v.
v.
DANA BARNES, et al., Defendants. CASEY MATTINGLY, Plaintiff

          ORDER

          TIMOTHY J. CORRIGAN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         I. Status

         Plaintiff was a pretrial detainee at the Duval County Jail when he initiated this case.[1]He is proceeding on a pro se Third Amended Complaint (Doc. 22) pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.[2] He claims that Defendants Dana Barnes, M.D.; Linda Richo, N.P.; and Sohail Khan, P.A. violated his constitutional rights when they were deliberately indifferent to his serious medical needs while he was housed at the jail.[3]

         Before the Court are Motions for Summary Judgment filed by Defendant Khan (Doc. 70) and Defendants Barnes and Richo (Doc. 71). Defendants filed Joint Exhibits (Doc. 72). The Court previously advised Plaintiff of the provisions of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56, and notified him that the granting of a motion for summary judgment may foreclose subsequent litigation on the matter. See Order (Doc. 24). Plaintiff filed a consolidated Response (Doc. 76) with Exhibits and a Declaration (Doc. 77). Defendants Barnes and Richo filed a Reply (Doc. 81), and Plaintiff filed a Sur-Reply (Doc. 82).[4] The Summary Judgment Motions are ripe for review.

         II. Plaintiff's Third Amended Complaint

         On May 9, 2013, Plaintiff slipped and fell in the Duval County Jail. He suffered a “Lisfranc Injury.” He was seen by physicians at UF Health, [5] who “recommended numerous treatments to Dr. Dana Barnes[] on numerous occasions, ” such as “pain management, physical therapy, repa[]rative surgery, nerve blocks, and pain medication.” However, Defendant “Barnes refused to allow the Plaintiff to receive any of the treatments until[] UF Health Physicians fought for them.” According to Plaintiff, Defendant Barnes considered the recommended treatments “elective” and “stated that JSO [(Jacksonville Sheriff's Office)] would not pay for them.” She also “refused to administer narcotic pain medication from the onset of the injury until[] the Plaintiff's leg was amputated and it was no longer needed.” In April 2014, Defendant Khan “took the Plaintiff's crutches from him and told him to ‘crawl his ass back to his dorm.'” Plaintiff alleges that Defendant Khan “threatened to taze the Plaintiff if he didn't comply.” Defendant “Khan refused to issue prescribe[d] medication from UF Health and told other nurses to avoid talking with the Plaintiff.” Defendant “Richo refused to issue prescribed medication from UF Health, and has told the Plaintiff that she would not refer him for speciality consultation.” Plaintiff claims that he “was suffering from Reflex Sympathy Dystrophy, a secondary and serious condition em[]anating from the Defendants' neglect and deliberate indifference of the Plaintiff's Lisfranc Injury.” According to Plaintiff, the Defendants were deliberately indifferent by “refusing him medically necessary therapies[ and] narcotic medication, ” and “at points [were] hostile to the Plaintiff.” He states that as a result of the Defendants' actions and inactions, his left leg was amputated “in order for him to gain some quality of life and mobility.” Plaintiff seeks monetary damages against each Defendant.

         III. Parties' Summary Judgment Positions

         Generally, Defendants argue that they were not deliberately indifferent to Plaintiff's serious medical needs and they are entitled to qualified immunity. They contend that Plaintiff consistently received adequate medical care and treatment at the jail, Florida State Hospital, and UF Health. Defendants filed the following exhibits in support of their positions: (1) the transcript of Plaintiff's deposition (Doc. 72-1 at 1-383) (Pl. Dep.) with exhibits (Doc. 72-1 at 384-482 to Doc. 72-2 at 1-104); (2) large portions of Plaintiff's medical records from the jail, UF Health, and Florida State Hospital (Doc. 72-3 to Doc. 72-6); (3) declarations from Defendant Barnes (Doc. 72-8 at 2-7) with exhibits (Doc. 72-8 at 9-38); Defendant Richo (Doc. 72-7 at 2-3) with exhibits (Doc. 72-7 at 5-26); Defendant Khan with exhibits (Doc. 72-11 and Doc. 72-12); Tara Wildes, the former Director of Corrections for the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office (Doc. 72-10); Dr. Chaim Rogozinski, a board certified orthopedic surgeon (Doc. 72-13); and Dr. Alan Abrams, a medical doctor and psychiatrist (Doc. 72-14); (4) a deposition transcript of Patricia Kalu, an RNP at Florida State Hospital (Doc. 72-9 at 2-14) with exhibits (Doc. 72-9 at 25-31); and (5) a demonstrative calendar reflecting the day-by-day care Plaintiff received from the date of his injury (May 9, 2013) to after his amputation (March 2015) (Doc. 72-15). According to Plaintiff, the record evidence shows that Defendants were deliberately indifferent to his serious medical needs resulting in unnecessary pain and ultimately, a below-the-knee amputation of his left leg.

         IV. Standard of Review

         “‘Summary judgment is appropriate where there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.'” Hinkle v. Midland Credit Mgmt., Inc., 827 F.3d 1295, 1300 (11th Cir. 2016) (quoting Jurich v. Compass Marine, Inc., 764 F.3d 1302, 1304 (11th Cir. 2014)); see Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). “A genuine issue of material fact exists when the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving party.” Bowen v. Manheim Remarketing, Inc., 882 F.3d 1358, 1362 (11th Cir. 2018) (quotations and citation omitted).

If the movant satisfies the burden of production showing that there is no genuine issue of fact, “the nonmoving party must present evidence beyond the pleadings showing that a reasonable jury could find in its favor.” Shiver v. Chertoff, 549 F.3d 1342, 1343 (11th Cir. 2008) (quotation omitted). [The Court] draw[s] “all factual inferences in a light most favorable to the non-moving party.” Id.

Winborn v. Supreme Beverage Co. Inc., 572 Fed.Appx. 672, 674 (11th Cir. 2014) (per curiam).

         “[W]hen the moving party has carried its burden under Rule 56(c), its opponent 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) (footnote and citation omitted). “‘A mere scintilla of evidence supporting the opposing party's position will not suffice; there must be enough of a showing that the jury could reasonably find for that party.'” Loren v. Sasser, 309 F.3d 1296, 1302 (11th Cir. 2002) (quoting Walker v. Darby, 911 F.2d 1573, 1577 (11th Cir.1990) (internal quotations omitted)).

         V. Deliberate Indifference Under 42 U.S.C. § 1983

         “To prevail on [a] § 1983 claim for inadequate medical treatment, [the plaintiff] must show (1) a serious medical need; (2) the health care providers' deliberate indifference to that need; and (3) causation between the health care providers' indifference and [the plaintiff's] injury.” Nam Dang by & through Vina Dang v. Sheriff, Seminole Cty. Fla., 871 F.3d 1272, 1279 (11th Cir. 2017) (citation omitted).[6]

A serious medical need is one that has been diagnosed by a physician as mandating treatment or one that is so obvious that even a lay person would easily recognize the necessity for a doctor's attention. In the alternative, a serious medical need is determined by whether a delay in treating the need worsens the condition. In either case, the medical need must be one that, if left unattended, poses a substantial risk of serious harm.

Mann v. Taser Int'l, Inc., 588 F.3d 1291, 1307 (11th Cir. 2009) (quotations and citation omitted).

         Deliberate indifference to a serious medical need requires “three components: (1) subjective knowledge of a risk of serious harm; (2) disregard of that risk; (3) by conduct that is more than mere negligence.” Farrow v. West, 320 F.3d 1235, 1245 (11th Cir. 2003) (citations omitted); see Dang, 871 F.3d at 1280; Melton, 841 F.3d at 1223 & n.2. “Subjective knowledge of the risk requires that the defendant be ‘aware of facts from which the inference could be drawn that a substantial risk of serious harm exists, and he must also draw the inference.'” Dang, 871 F.3d at 1280 (quoting Caldwell v. Warden, FCI Talladega, 784 F.3d 1090, 1099-1100 (11th Cir. 2014)).

An official disregards a serious risk by more than mere negligence “when he [or she] knows that an inmate is in serious need of medical care, but he [or she] fails or refuses to obtain medical treatment for the inmate.” Lancaster v. Monroe Cty., Ala., 116 F.3d 1419, 1425 (11th Cir. 1997), overruled on other grounds by LeFrere v. Quezada, 588 F.3d 1317, 1318 (11th Cir. 2009). Even when medical care is ultimately provided, a prison official may nonetheless act with deliberate indifference by delaying the treatment of serious medical needs. See Harris v. Coweta Cty., 21 F.3d 388, 393-94 (11th Cir. 1994) (citing Brown v. Hughes, 894 F.2d 1533, 1537-39 (11th Cir. 1990)).[7] Further, “medical care which is so cursory as to amount to no treatment at all may amount to deliberate indifference.” Mandel v. Doe, 888 F.2d 783, 789 (11th Cir. 1989) (citations omitted). However, medical treatment violates the Constitution only when it is “so grossly incompetent, inadequate, or excessive as to shock the conscience or to be intolerable to fundamental fairness.” Rogers v. Evans, 792 F.2d 1052, 1058 (11th Cir. 1986) (citation omitted).

Dang, 871 F.3d at 1280. “‘[I]mputed or collective knowledge cannot serve as the basis for a claim of deliberate indifference. Each individual defendant must be judged separately and on the basis of what that person kn[ew].'” Id. (quoting Burnette v. Taylor, 533 F.3d 1325, 1331 (11th Cir. 2008)).

         VI. Analysis

         No party disputes that Plaintiff had a serious medical need. The only question then is whether Defendants were deliberately indifferent to that need. The Court considers Plaintiff's claims as to each Defendant.

         Before doing so, however, the Court addresses a consistent theme throughout Plaintiff's deposition: his contention that the medical records are inaccurate. Plaintiff has not presented any evidence that these records were fabricated in any way, and “[s]elf-serving statements by a plaintiff do not create a question of fact in the face of contradictory, contemporaneously created medical records.” Whitehead v. Burnside, 403 Fed.Appx. 401, 403 (11th Cir. 2010) (citing Bennett v. Parker, 898 F.2d 1530 (11th Cir. 1990)); see generally Kingsland v. City of Miami, 382 F.3d 1220, 1227 n.8 (11th Cir. 2004) (“[A] court need not entertain conclusory and unsubstantiated allegations of fabrication of evidence.” (citation omitted)). Regardless, these “disputes” are not material for purposes of resolving the Summary Judgment Motions.

         A. Defendant Barnes

         Plaintiff alleges that Defendant Barnes “refused to administer narcotic pain medication” and “refused to allow the Plaintiff to receive any of the treatments until[] UF Health Physicians fought for them, ” because Defendant Barnes considered them “elective treatments” for which “JSO would not pay.” During his deposition, Plaintiff summarized his claims against Defendant Barnes.

My claim against Dr. Barnes is that she refused for the physical therapy initially. She refused the nerve block initially.
She refused the neurology consult, an ortho consult, I believe a podiatry consult. There was four different times that -- three or four different times. I think one of them was a double entry. . . .
[T]he fact that she refused to give me medication that would help actually combat my pain, actually reduce my pain and put me in a state where, “Okay, I can function and live with this as normally as possible, ” that's a claim against her. Those are all of my claims against her.

Pl. Dep. (Doc. 72-1) at 328; see also id. at 329-30.

         Defendant Barnes submitted the following Declaration.

My name is Dana Barnes. I am a defendant in the above-styled action. I have been a Florida-licensed medical doctor since 2008 and Board-certified in family medicine since 2011. I am the physician in charge of medical care and treatment at the John E. Goode Pre-Trial Detention Facility, and have been in this role since 2011.
I have personal knowledge of Casey Mattingly's injury to his left foot, and the medical treatment that was provided to him for his injury between 2013 and 2015.
I personally saw Mr. Mattingly in the PTDF medical clinic on numerous occasions.
. . . .
My first encounter with Mr. Mattingly after his incarceration at PTDF was on May 22, 2012. Mr. Mattingly was in self-harm at the time recovering from a reported overdose and drug withdrawal. Mr. Mattingly told me that he heavily abused MDMA (commonly referred to as Ecstasy or Molly) and benzodiazepines (commonly referred to as Xanax or Valium). Mr. Mattingly also told me that he abused opiates that had originally been prescribed to him for chronic pain.
After the injury to his left foot in May 2013, my medical staff promptly sent him to the UF Health Emergency Department for evaluation, and subsequently referred Mr. Mattingly to UF Health Orthopedics and UF Health Podiatry.
Between May 2013 [and] his admission to UF Health for his amputation in 2015, Mr. Mattingly was transported from the PTDF to UF Health on dozens of occasions for X-rays, physical therapy, and treatment and evaluation by orthopedics, neurology, pain management, and podiatry.
On July 30, 2013, Mr. Mattingly was seen by UF Health Podiatry and diagnosed with CRPS, [8] a diagnosis which was found to be incorrect. The treating physician, a resident in podiatry, recommended that Mr. Mattingly begin physical therapy and also be evaluated by the UF Health Neurology Department. I referred Mr. Mattingly to physical therapy, but at that time, in my professional opinion, a neurology consultation was not warranted given that the injury was so recent and was expected to improve with physical therapy. However, less than one month later, on August 20, 2013, I decided to refer Mr. Mattingly to UF Health Neurology. Mr. Mattingly was in fact seen by UF Health Neurology on September 16, 2013.
On September 11, 2013, I examined Mr. Mattingly in the PTDF medical clinic, and I referred him back to UF Health Podiatry noting that repeat imaging should be considered given that the injury was not getting any better.
On September 17, 2013, Mr. Mattingly was seen by podiatry and I was advised by the podiatrist that a sympathetic nerve block procedure was recommended. As this procedure involved risks, including general anesthesia and spinal injections, I called the podiatrist and explained that I believed this procedure to be a last resort in CRPS cases and that I was unaware of any benefit at this time. The podiatrist responded that she would forward literature or evidence of the benefit of this procedure to me, but she never sent me anything. In my professional opinion, I believed that given the evasive nature the potential harm substantially outweighed any potential benefit.[9] Further, any of the UF Health specialists, including podiatry, could have admitted Mr. Mattingly at any time and initiated this treatment as an in-patient procedure.
On September 18, 2013, after Mr. Mattingly was seen by UF Health Neurology and Podiatry, I saw Mr. Mattingly in the PTDF medical clinic. Previously, I had prescribed a drug called Elavil for his pain. On this date, Mr. Mattingly told me that the Elavil was not helping. I offered Mr. Mattingly an increased dose of Elavil, but [he] refused and chose to stop Elavil altogether.[10] I advised Mr. Mattingly that he needed to perform range of motion exercises all of the time, not just at physical therapy, and that the non-usage of his foot was the ...

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