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Civil Rights – prisoners — deliberate indifference

United States Court of Appeals For the Seventh Circuit


Civil Rights – prisoners — deliberate indifference

Where a jail doctor ignored a prisoner’s seizures, summary judgment should not have been granted to her on the prisoner’s deliberate indifference claim.

“There is a question of material fact whether Kramer’s actions were so far afield from an appropriate medical response to King’s seizures that they fell outside the bounds of her professional judgment. Kramer’s statements to the nursing students suggests that she had already decided that King was faking seizures even before she saw him. She was aware that he was withdrawing from alprazolam, and that seizures can result from withdrawal. Upon arriving at the cell, she was unable to get reliable oximeter and blood pressure readings because King’s convulsions were too severe. When she then employed the smelling salts test, his response was consistent with a seizure. His face turned blue, which we note is one of the symptoms that requires immediate medical attention, according to the MedlinePlus service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine at the National Institutes of Health. See 9.htm (last visited May 22, 2012). Kramer deliberately ignored the results of the tests she was able to administer. This evidence is enough to raise a question of material fact whether Kramer was subjectively aware that King faced a serious risk of a medical emergency. Collignon v. Milwaukee Cnty., 163 F.3d 982, 989 (7th Cir. 1998).”

Affirmed in part, and Reversed in part.

11-2204 King v. Kramer

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin, Conley, J., Wood, J.

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