United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania
RICHARD P. CONABOY UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Pittman (Plaintiff), an inmate presently confined at the
State Correctional Institution, Houtzdale, Pennsylvania
(SCI-Houtzdale) initiated this pro se civil rights
action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the United States
District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. By
Memorandum and Order dated February 27, 2014, the Eastern
District granted Pittman's request for leave to proceed
in forma pauperis, dismissed some of his claims and
Defendants, and transferred his surviving claims relating to
his prior confinement at the State Correctional Institution,
Dallas, Pennsylvania (SCI-Dallas) to this Court.
by Order dated April 11, 2014, a second action filed by
Plaintiff, Pittman v. Corbett, ,
Civil No. 3:CV-14-567, which was intended to be a proposed
amended complaint was consolidated into this matter.
See Doc. 11. However, the Plaintiff's proposed
amended complaint was not accepted and he was granted leave
to file and serve a proper amended complaint. See id.
Plaintiff subsequently filed an amended complaint (Doc. 13)
which was accepted by the Court.
pending is a motion to dismiss filed by Defendant Corizon
Healthcare Inc. (“Corizon”). See Doc.
30. The opposed motion is ripe for consideration.
respect to the Moving Defendant, the Amended Complaint states
that Pittman has been diagnosed with a skin disorder,
“steatocystoma multiplex which has riddled his body
with innumerable sebaceous cysts and many keloids”
which cause moderate pain when they become infected or
irritated. Doc. 13, ¶ 11. Plaintiff asserts that Corizon
was contracted to provide medical services to the SCI-Dallas
inmate population during the relevant time period.
acknowledges that he has been provided treatment for his
condition which has included periodic steroid injections,
excision and draining of cysts, and consultation with a
dermatologist. However, he contends Doctor Stanish, a Corizon
employee improperly halted the steroid injections and that
other previously prescribed care has not been provided by the
SCI-Dallas medical staff. Plaintiff vaguely asserts that the
lack of treatment was the result of an unconstitutional
Corizon policy and/or custom. See id. at ¶ 19.
The Amended Complaint adds that these alleged denials of
medical care transpired between 2012-13. Plaintiff seeks
injunctive relief, compensatory and punitive damages.
Moving Defendant does not dispute that it contracted with the
Pennsylvania Department of Corrections (DOC) to provide
medical care to the SCI-Dallas inmate population or that
Pittman suffers from steatocystoma multiplex, which they
describe as being an uncommon benign disorder which typically
manifests as multiple asymptomatic intradermal cysts.
See Doc. 31, p. 2. However Corizon claims
entitlement to entry of dismissal because the facts alleged
in the Amended Complaint do not identify “any
particular policy or program” which purportedly
violated Plaintiff's constitutional rights. Doc. 31, p.
Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) provides for the dismissal
of complaints that fail to state a claim upon which relief
can be granted. When ruling on a motion to dismiss under Rule
12(b)(6), the court must “accept as true all factual
allegations in the complaint and all reasonable inferences
that can be drawn therefrom, and view them in the light most
favorable to the plaintiff.” Kanter v.
Barella, 489 F.3d 170, 177 (3d Cir. 2007)(quoting
Evancho v. Fisher, 423 F.3d 347, 350 (3d Cir.
2005)). A plaintiff must present facts that, if true,
demonstrate a plausible right to relief. See
Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(stating that the complaint should include
“a short and plain statement of the claim showing that
the pleader is entitled to relief”); Bell Atl.
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). This
requirement “calls for enough facts to raise a
reasonable expectation that discovery will reveal evidence
of” the necessary elements of the plaintiff's cause
of action. Id. at 556.
complaint must contain “more than an unadorned,
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009).
“Threadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of
action, supported by mere conclusory statements do not
suffice.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678. Legal
conclusions must be supported by factual allegations and the
complaint must state a plausible claim for relief. See
id. at 679.
allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above
the speculative level, on the assumption that all the
allegations in the complaint are true (even if doubtful in
fact).” Twombly, at 555. The reviewing court
must determine whether the complaint “contain[s] either
direct or inferential allegations respecting all the material
elements necessary to sustain recovery under some viable
legal theory.” Id. at 562; see also
Phillips v. County of Allegheny, 515 F.3d 224, 234 (3d
Cir. 2008)(in order to survive a motion to dismiss, a
plaintiff must allege in his complaint “enough facts to
raise a reasonable expectation that discovery will reveal
evidence of the necessary element[s]” of a particular
cause of action). Additionally, pro se pleadings are
to be construed liberally, Haines v. Kerner, 404
U.S. 519, 520 (1972).