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Author:  Margaret R.  Moreland, J.D., M.S.L.S..

Source: Volume 12, Number 02, January/February 2011 , pp.19-21(3)

Correctional Health Care Report

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The Supreme Court Declines to Hear a Prisoner’s Appeal. Anthony C. Pitre, an HIV-positive state inmate in Louisiana, alleged that he had been assigned to hard labor in 100-degree heat solely in retaliation for his refusal to take his medication. He refused as a protest against his transfer to the Phelps Correctional Center. However, while Pitre was carrying out his assigned work, his condition became so serious that he was twice rushed to the emergency room. Nevertheless, all his requests for an easier assignment in light of his condition were denied. Delay in Providing Pain Medication The disputed issue in Williams v. Certain Individual Employees of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice , 2010 U.S. App. LEXIS 16556 (5th Cir. August 6, 2010), was whether those named as defendants had “refused to treat [the plaintiff], ignored his complaints, intentionally treated him incorrectly, or engaged in any similar conduct that would clearly evince a wanton disregard for any serious medical needs.” Similar Circumstances–Different Result. Elwood Small, a Pennsylvania state inmate incarcerated at SCI-Houtzdale when he underwent surgery on his shoulder in 2006, claimed that prison officials acted with deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs when they failed to ensure that he received the postsurgical physical therapy prescribed by his surgeons.

Keywords: Pitre, Caine, HIV, refuse medication, deliberate indifference, Small, Visinsky, physical therapy

Affiliations:  1: Pace University School of Law Library.

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