United States District Court, N.D. California
ORDER OF DISMISSAL WITH LEAVE TO AMEND
THELTON E. HENDERSON United States District Judge.
an inmate at Pelican Bay State Prison, filed this pro
se civil rights action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983.
Plaintiff is granted leave to proceed in forma
pauperis in a separate order. His complaint is now
before the Court for initial screening pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
courts must engage in a preliminary screening of cases in
which prisoners seek redress from a governmental entity or
officer or employee of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A(a). The Court must identify cognizable claims or
dismiss the complaint, or any portion of the complaint, if
the complaint "is frivolous, malicious, or fails to
state a claim upon which relief may be granted, " or
"seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune
from such relief." Id. § 1915A(b).
Pleadings filed by pro se litigants, however, must be
liberally construed. Hebbe v. Pliler, 627 F.3d 338,
342 (9th Cir. 2010); Balistreri v. Pacifica Police
Dep't., 901 F.2d 696, 699 (9th Cir. 1990).
state a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must
allege two essential elements: (1) that a right secured by
the Constitution or laws of the United States was violated,
and (2) that the alleged violation was committed by a person
acting under the color of state law. West v. Atkins,
487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988).
states that he has received inadequate medical care.
indifference to serious medical needs violates the Eighth
Amendment's proscription against cruel and unusual
punishment. Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 104
(1976); McGuckin v. Smith, 974 F.2d 1050, 1059 (9th
Cir. 1992), overruled on other grounds, WMX
Technologies, Inc. v. Miller, 104 F.3d 1133, 1136 (9th
Cir. 1997) (en banc). A determination of "deliberate
indifference" involves an examination of two elements:
the seriousness of the prisoner's medical need and the
nature of the defendant's response to that need.
Id. at 1059.
"serious" medical need exists if the failure to
treat a prisoner's condition could result in further
significant injury or the "unnecessary and wanton
infliction of pain." Id. The existence of an
injury that a reasonable doctor or patient would find
important and worthy of comment or treatment; the presence of
a medical condition that significantly affects an
individual's daily activities; or the existence of
chronic and substantial pain are examples of indications that
a prisoner has a "serious" need for medical
treatment. Id. at 1059-60.
prison official is deliberately indifferent if he or she
knows that a prisoner faces a substantial risk of serious
harm and disregards that risk by failing to take reasonable
steps to abate it. Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U.S. 825,
837 (1994). The prison official must not only "be aware
of facts from which the inference could be drawn that a
substantial risk of serious harm exists, " but he
"must also draw the inference." Id. If a
prison official should have been aware of the risk, but was
not, then the official has not violated the Eighth Amendment,
no matter how severe the risk. Gibson v. County of
Washoe, 290 F.3d 1175, 1188 (9th Cir. 2002). "A
difference of opinion between a prisoner-patient and prison
medical authorities regarding treatment does not give rise to
a § 1983 claim." Franklin v. Oregon, 662
F.2d 1337, 1344 (9th Cir. 1981).
states that he has been denied medical care for his chronic
psoriasis and eczema. Plaintiff identifies eight Defendants
but in the body of the complaint only describes the actions
of one Defendant. He states that Nurse Risenhoover denied
treatment by refusing creams and ointments that has been
working well for plaintiff. As a result he suffers from
bleeding, scabbing, and pain. Liberally construed this is
sufficient to state a claim against Risenhoover.
Plaintiff has failed to present any allegations against the
remaining Defendants. The complaint will be dismissed with
leave to amend to identify the specific actions of the other
Defendants and describe how they violated Plaintiff's
constitutional rights. Simply attaching exhibits is
insufficient. Failure to amend will result in this case
proceeding solely against Risenhoover. If plaintiff does file
an amended complaint he must include the allegations against
foregoing reasons, the Court ...