United States District Court, D. Idaho
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER
C. Nye Chief U.S. District Court Judge.
are three motions currently pending before the Court. First,
is Defendant Rona Siegert's Motion for Summary Judgment.
Dkt. 21. Second, is Plaintiff Carlos Lara's
(“Lara”) Cross-Motion for Partial Summary
Judgment. Dkt. 30. Third, is Defendants Corizon Correctional
Healthcare (“Corizon”), P.A. Brown
(“Brown”), Sam Pierson (“Pierson”),
and Grant Roberts' (“Roberts”) Motion for
Summary Judgment. Dkt. 33.
reviewed the record and briefs, the Court finds that the
facts and legal arguments are adequately presented.
Accordingly, in the interest of avoiding further delay, and
because the Court finds that the decisional process would not
be significantly aided by oral argument, the Court will
decide the Motions without oral argument. Dist. Idaho Loc.
Civ. R. 7.1(d)(2)(ii). For the reasons set forth below, the
Court finds good cause to GRANT Defendants Motions for
Summary Judgment (Dkt. 21; Dkt. 33) and DENY Plaintiff's
Cross-Motion for Partial Summary Judgment (Dkt. 30).
a prisoner in the custody of the Idaho Department of
Correction (“IDOC”), currently incarcerated at
Idaho State Correctional Center. He alleges that in February
2017, he developed an ingrown toenail on his left foot. Dkt.
3, at 8. On February 15, 2017, Defendant Brown, a
physician's assistant, removed the toenail, cleaned
Lara's wound, and told him to hold gauze over the wound
until he could get back to his unit. He also told Lara to
hold toilet paper on the wound until the bleeding stopped and
to take ibuprofen for pain. Lara reminded Brown that he is
allergic to ibuprofen, at which point Brown “got mad at
[him] and yelled, ‘Oh well! It will probably get
infected anyways.'” Id.
requested pain medication for his toe the next day and was
told by a nurse to fill out a Health Services Request
(“HSR”) form. Id. at 8-9. Two days after
Lara's toenail was removed, another nurse informed him
that he “should have been given gauze for such a
wound.” Id. at 9.
obtained gauze from the medical unit, but when he removed the
gauze later that morning, “he had puss [sic] and blood
leeking [sic] out of his toe.” Id. Lara claims
that his wound ultimately became infected. Three days after
the toenail was removed, he was examined by a nurse after he
submitted an HSR. She informed him that “she would talk
to P.A. Brown about the infection and try to get [him] on
antibiotics.” Id. at 10.
next day, a nurse changed Lara's gauze, and he was placed
on a course of antibiotics. Although Lara states that he was
in significant pain, the unidentified medical provider that
performed his next evaluation allegedly “refused him
pain medication.” Id. Eight days after the
toenail was removed, P.A. Brown examined Lara, “looked
at the toe, and said, ‘I told you it would get
infected' then he [l]aughed . . . and said, ‘Well,
welcome to prison.'” Id. at 11.
submitted several concern forms and grievances with respect
to his medical treatment following the removal of the
toenail. Most of them were returned with the instruction,
“Submit an HSR.” Id. at 11-14. With
respect to his concerns that a physician's assistant was
not qualified to remove his toenail, Defendant Pierson
responded (1) that a physician's assistance can, indeed,
perform “surgery, ” and (2) that “surgery
on a toe is not surgery”; Pierson also opined that Lara
was given antibiotics for no reason, as there was no sign of
infection in his toe. Id. at 11-12. Another concern
form regarding the infection was returned to Lara by
Defendant Roberts, who stated that Plaintiff knew “the
risks and side effects” and had the right to refuse
care. Id. at 12.
also filed a grievance with respect to the medical treatment
for his toe. Defendant Pierson was the Level 1 Responder, and
Defendant Roberts was the Level 2 Responder. The grievance
was denied with the following response: “You agreed to
the procedure, and the risk involved. If you need additional
care please submit an H.S.R. to be seen in clinic.”
Id. at 13. Lara appealed. Defendant Siegert, acting
as the appellate authority, affirmed the denial of the
grievance, stating, “I would encourage you to follow up
with a provider by submitting an HSR, if your toe does not
feel better soon.” Id. at 14.
alleges that after his condition grew worse he was placed on
multiple rounds of antibiotics, and ultimately underwent a
second toe surgery on April 20, 2017. Id. at 14-15.
1, 2017, he filed the instant action. His Complaint includes
a number of claims against various defendants. This Court
conducted an Initial Review and allowed Lara to proceed only
with his Eighth Amendment medical treatment claims against
Defendants Brown, Pierson, Roberts, Siegert, and Corizon.
Dkt. 7, at 25-27. All other claims, and all other Defendants,
were dismissed without prejudice. Dkt. 19.
filed her Motion for Summary Judgment on March 5, 2018. Dkt.
21. Shortly thereafter, Lara filed a Cross-Motion for Partial
Summary Judgment (Dkt. 30), and then, on July 24, 2018,
Defendants Corizon, Brown, ...