Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Norwood v. State, Department of Corrections Bureau of Correctional Healthcare Services

United States District Court, D. Delaware

May 30, 2019

TYRONE NORWOOD, Plaintiff,
v.
STATE OF DELAWARE DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTION BUREAU OF CORRECTIONAL HEALTHCARE SERVICES, Defendant.

          Tyrone Norwood, James T. Vaughn Correctional Center, Smyrna, Delaware, Pro Se Plaintiff.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          CONNOLLY, U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE.

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Plaintiff Tyrone Norwood ("Plaintiff'), an inmate at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center ("VCC") in Smyrna, Delaware, filed this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983[1] against Defendant State of Delaware Department of Correction Bureau of Correctional Healthcare Services ("Defendant"). (D.I. 3) Plaintiff appears pro se and has been granted leave to proceed in forma pauperis. (D.I. 5) The Court proceeds to review and screen the matter pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(b) and § 1915A(a).

         II. BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff alleges that in May 2013 he began submitting sick call requests after he noticed the "white area" (i.e., sclera) of both of his eyes seemed to be turning yellow. (D.I. 3 at 5) He was examined by a nurse who told Plaintiff there was nothing to be alarmed about. (Id.) A month or two later, Plaintiff submitted a second sick call request because the "white area appeared to be progressing to a darker yellow." (Id.) Blood tests were performed and Plaintiff was referred to an outside medical provider. (Id. at 6) The blood tests were within normal limits. (Id.)

         Plaintiff alleges his health was steadily deteriorating. (Id.) He met with a provider at the prison infirmary and was not satisfied with the assessment and began submitting medical grievances. (Id.) Another blood test was performed and this time, the results were not within normal limits. (Id.) Approximately a month or two later, Plaintiff was taken to an outside medical provider. (Id.) Plaintiff believes that a CAT scan was performed. (Id.) The results were negative. (Id.)

         Plaintiff alleges after that, the institutional medical staff "basically washed their hands of the situation" and Plaintiff's "health steadily deteriorated over the next year." (Id.) He began submitting medical grievances. (Id.) Plaintiff alleges that he was "given the run around by the medical grievance board and institutional medical staff' about being scheduled to see an outside specialist. (Id.) Plaintiff alleges his health steadily declined. (Id.)

         Another year passed and Plaintiff began to exhibit signs of liver issues. (Id. at 6-7). Plaintiff began submitting medical grievances. (Id. at 7) He alleges that he was not properly diagnosed or given adequate medical care in light of his symptoms. (Id.) He was seen by a physician and told that severe swelling in his legs could be from salt intake, but he was not given medication. (Id.) When Plaintiff's stomach became swollen and there was severe inflammation, he was taken to the hospital, diagnosed with excessive stomach acid, treated, and given various medications. (Id.) The condition returned and he returned to the hospital, received the same treatment, and was diagnosed with liver issues. (Id.) Plaintiff alleges the diagnosis was made after approximately five years of sick calls and medical grievances. (Id.) A liver transplant was performed. (Id.) Plaintiff does not provide the date of the surgery.

         "[P]laintiff believes that the deliberate indifference standard applies and also faults the inadequate medical care and the medical staffs' lack of a timely assessment and proper diagnosis which could have possible [sic] changed this outcome." (Id. at 7-8) He seeks compensatory and punitive damages.

         III. LEGAL STANDARDS

         A federal court may properly dismiss an action sua sponte under the screening provisions of 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B) and § 1915A(b) if "the action is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief." Ball v. Famiglio, 726 F.3d 448, 452 (3d Cir. 2013); see also 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2) (in forma pauperis actions); 28 U.S.C. § 1915A (actions in which prisoner seeks redress from a governmental defendant); 42 U.S.C. § 1997e (prisoner actions brought with respect to prison conditions). The Court must accept all factual allegations in a complaint as true and take them in the light most favorable to a pro se plaintiff. See Phillips v. County of Allegheny, 515 F.3d 224, 229 (3d Cir. 2008); Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 93 (2007). Because Plaintiff proceeds pro se, his pleading is liberally construed and his Complaint, "however inartfully pleaded, must be held to less stringent standards than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers." Erickson, 551 U.S. at 94 (citations omitted).

         An action is frivolous if it "lacks an arguable basis either in law or in fact." Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). Under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(i) and § 1915A(b)(1), a court may dismiss a complaint as frivolous if it is "based on an indisputably meritless legal theory" or a "clearly baseless" or "fantastic or delusional" factual scenario. Neitzke, 490 U.S. at 327-28; see also Wilson v. Rackmill, 878 F.2d 772, 774 (3d Cir. 1989); Deutsch v. United States, 67 F.3d 1080, 1091-92 (3d Cir. 1995) (holding frivolous a suit alleging that prison officials took an inmate's pen and refused to give it back).

         The legal standard for dismissing a complaint for failure to state a claim pursuant to § 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii) and § 1915A(b)(1) is identical to the legal standard used when deciding Rule 12(b)(6) motions. See Tourscher v. McCullough,184 F.3d 236, 240 (3d Cir. 1999) (applying Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6) standard to dismissal for failure to state a claim under § 1915(e)(2)(B)). However, before dismissing a complaint or claims for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted pursuant to the screening provisions of 28 U.S.C. §§1915 and 1915A, the Court must ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.