Can multiple physician refusals of covered emergency medication, specifically denying to provide covered services without stating cause for the refusal, be considered as “deliberate indifference” in medical care?
When prison personnel make conscious or reckless disregard of the consequences of their acts or omissions, they may be liable for deliberate indifference. However, the courts have objective and subjective tests that could determine whether there is deliberate indifference or not, depending on the case. For example, there may be deliberate indifference if there is an intentional delay in the treatment of a known injury such as in the case of Farmer v. Brennan (1994). The key is for the injury and risk must be clear and known, and the harm or risk of harm caused must be apparent and substantial.
If there is a possible case involving deliberate indifference, the best course of action is to work with a lawyer who has knowledge and experience in dealing with such cases.