United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Indianapolis Division
ENTRY SCREENING COMPLAINT AND DIRECTING FURTHER
WALTON PRATT, JUDGE
I. Screening Standard
plaintiff is a prisoner currently incarcerated at Pendleton
Correctional Facility ("Pendleton"). Because the
plaintiff is a "prisoner" as defined by 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(h), this Court has an obligation under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A(b) to screen his complaint before service on the
defendants. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b), the Court
must dismiss the complaint if it is frivolous or malicious,
fails to state a claim for relief, or seeks monetary relief
against a defendant who is immune from such relief. In
determining whether the complaint states a claim, the Court
applies the same standard as when addressing a motion to
dismiss under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6).
See Lagerstrom v. Kingston, 463 F.3d 621, 624 (7th
Cir. 2006). To survive dismissal,
[the] complaint must contain sufficient factual matter,
accepted as true, to state a claim for relief that is
plausible on its face. A claim has facial plausibility when
the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to
draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable
for the misconduct alleged.
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). Pro se
complaints such as that filed by the plaintiff are construed
liberally and held to a less stringent standard than formal
pleadings drafted by lawyers. Obriecht v. Raemisch,
517 F.3d 489, 491 n.2 (7th Cir. 2008).
plaintiff brings this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §
1983 against defendants Dr. Paul Talbot, Corizon Medical
Services ("Corizon"), Wexford Health Services
("Wexford"), Jennifer Schurman, and Health Services
Administrator LaFlowers. The plaintiff alleges that Dr.
Talbot knowingly delayed and provided ineffective treatment
for the plaintiff s MRS A, which caused him unnecessary
suffering. He further alleges that Dr. Talbot did this at
least in part to fulfill his employer's-Corizon and then
Wexford-goal of minimizing costs, which causes inmates to
receive ineffective medical treatments.
on the plaintiffs allegations, certain claims shall proceed
in this action while others must be dismissed.
the plaintiffs claims against Jennifer Schurman are
dismissed. The plaintiff alleges that she
denied him access to the grievance process, which prevented
him from completing the grievance process with respect to the
claims brought in this action. This is insufficient to state
a constitutional violation. The Seventh Circuit has
"specifically denounc[ed] a Fourteenth Amendment
substantive due-process right to an inmate grievance
procedure." Grieveson v. Anderson, 538 F.3d
763, 772 (7th Cir. 2008). As explained in Antonelli v.
Sheahan, 81 F.3d 1422, 1430-31 (7th Cir. 1996),
"any right to a grievance procedure is a procedural
right, not a substantive one. Accordingly, a state's
inmate grievance procedures do not give rise to a liberty
interest protected by the Due Process Clause."
Id. at 1430-31 (citations omitted). Although the
denial of access to the grievance process could assist the
plaintiff in overcoming any exhaustion defense raised by the
defendants, the denial of the process does not amount to a
standalone constitutional violation.
the plaintiffs claims against Health Services Administrator
LaFlowers are dismissed. Although the
plaintiff provides the generic allegation that she failed to
provide him proper medical treatment, he does not provide any
"factual content that allows the court to draw the
reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the
misconduct alleged." Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678.
His only factual allegation regarding her is that she
"attempted to assist Plaintiff in getting the medical
care for his chronic condition that Dr. Talbot ignored and/or
refused to treat." Dkt. 2 at 5.
following claims, however, shall proceed ...