United States District Court, D. Maryland
DONALD R. PEVIA, Plaintiff
WEXFORD HEALTH SOURCES, INC., et al. Defendants
L. Hollander United States District Judge
Pevia, a frequent litigator in this Court, has filed suit
under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against Wexford Health Sources,
Inc. (“Wexford”) and Ali Yahya,
Pevia, who is self-represented, is an inmate currently
confined at the Western Correctional Institution. ECF 22. He
alleges that, while incarcerated at North Branch Correctional
Institution (“NBCI”), he was denied
constitutionally adequate medical care. ECF 1.
is a motion to dismiss, or, in the alternative, for summary
judgment filed by Wexford and Yahya. ECF 15. It is supported
by a memorandum and several exhibits. Plaintiff opposes the
motion and seeks to add two additional
defendants. ECF 19. The motion is supported by exhibits.
Defendants have filed a response (ECF 20), to which plaintiff
has replied. ECF 21.
court finds a hearing unnecessary. See Local Rule
105.6 (D. Md. 2016). For the reasons that follow,
defendants' dispositive motion shall be denied, without
prejudice, subject to renewal as herein stated.
Plaintiff's combined motions for summary judgment and to
add two additional defendants (ECF 19) shall also be denied.
alleges that in February of 2013, he was seen by medical
staff at NBCI due to his complaints that his knee
“constantly slipp[ed] out of place and swell[ed] to the
size of a softball.” ECF 1 at 3. Plaintiff states that
an x-ray was ordered and he was provided a steroid injection
on an unspecified date. Id. Plaintiff explains that
in 2006, before his incarceration, he injured his knee
playing basketball, suffering a dislocation, fracture, and
torn ligaments. Id. He claims that the torn
ligaments caused his knee to “constantly slip out of
place.” Plaintiff states that between 2013 and 2016, he
“has complained about his knee.” Id.
of 2016, plaintiff's knee again slipped out of place.
Id. at 3. An x-ray was ordered and plaintiff was
provided analgesic pain medication. Id. The x-rays
showed that plaintiff's knee had multiple bone spurs and
that the space within his knee was decreased. Id. A
request that plaintiff be seen by an orthopedist was
submitted but denied by Wexford's collegial review
process. Id. at 4-5. Instead, it was recommended
that plaintiff undergo a steroid injection. Id. at
5. Plaintiff was advised that only Dr. Yahya could override
the decision of “collegial.” Id. When
plaintiff saw Dr. Yahya for the injection, plaintiff states
that Yahya advised him that collegial likely declined the
referral to an orthopedist given that plaintiff could still
walk. Id. at 6. Plaintiff asked if Dr. Yahya could
order the consultation but he said, “no.”
Id. Yahya provided the injection (id. at 7)
and ultimately plaintiff developed an infection at the
injection site, which required additional treatment.
Id. at 8. Another request for plaintiff to be seen
by an orthopedist was submitted in November of 2016.
argue, inter alia, that they are entitled to
judgment as a matter of law as the care provided to plaintiff
for the June 2016 injury to his knee was constitutionally
adequate. In so arguing, defendants characterize
plaintiff's claim as “that he received inadequate
care regarding his June 2016 left knee injury.” ECF
15-3 at 18 (memorandum in support of motion). They also
contend that pages 1-5 of plaintiff's opposition provide
“‘historical' background to his lawsuit which
has no relevance to plaintiff's allegations regarding
medical care for his knee after the alleged injury in June of
2016 as stated in the complaint.” ECF 20 at 2, ¶
7. In support of their motion, defendants provide
plaintiff's pertinent medical records from June of 2016
through the filing of their dispositive motion (ECF 15-4) as
well as the affidavit of Robustiano Barrera, M.D., in which
he describes and characterizes the care plaintiff received
for his knee injury, beginning in June of 2016. ECF 15-5.
court does not read plaintiff's complaint so narrowly.
Plaintiff's initial complaint specifies that he
complained of problems with his knee from 2013-2016,
including claims that his knee gave out during that time. In
plaintiff's “opposition, ” he reiterates his
claims that since 2013 he has tried to get proper treatment
for his knee. ECF 19 at 3. The court construes
plaintiff's complaint allegations as raising claims not
solely of inadequate medical care arising from the June 2016
injury but rather including claims that he has been denied
adequate medical care regarding his knee injury since 2013,
and that the June 2016 injury was caused by a failure to
properly treat his knee dating back to at least 2013. In
light of defendants' failure to address these aspects of
plaintiff's complaint, the pending motion for summary
judgment shall be denied, without prejudice, subject to
renewal within thirty days of the date of this Memorandum and
the accompanying Order.
plaintiff's motion to amend the complaint to “name
actual defendants” (ECF 19) shall be denied. Plaintiff
seeks to add Nichole Braithwaite and Oliva Pyles as
defendants, as their names appear on the “collegial
papers” regarding consultation requests entered on
plaintiff's behalf. Defendants oppose the motion. ECF 20.
They indicate, via affidavit, that Olivia Pyles is a medical
records technician whose duties involve processing inmate
medical records. ECF 20-1, ¶ 1. Nicole Mayhew
nee Brathwaite was formerly a specialty clinics
clerk for Wexford responsible for making specialty medical
appointments. Id. at ¶ 2.
Pyles nor Mayhew was responsible for approving or
disapproving medical care in regard to the records they
processed. Id., ¶ 3. Neither is a medical
provider and neither has provided, approved, or disapproved
medical care for plaintiff. Id.
the court is well aware that liberality in amendment is
important to assure a party a fair opportunity to present his
claims and defenses, leave to amend may be denied where the
proposed amendment would be prejudicial to the opposing
party, or the moving party has acted in bad faith, or the
amendment would be futile. See Equal Rights Ctr. v. Niles
Bolton Assoc., 602 F.3d 597, 603 (4th Cir. 2010). As it
is apparent that neither Pyles nor Mayhew was personally
involved in the provision or denial of medical care to
plaintiff, but rather were simply ...