United States District Court, D. Oregon
FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATION
MUSTAFA T. KASUBHAI UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
filed suit against Oregon State Hospital (OSH) and two
medical providers and alleged the forcible and arbitrary
administration of medication in violation of his federal due
process rights. The individual defendants now move for
summary judgment on grounds that plaintiff's claim is
barred by the Rooker-Feldman doctrine, the statute
of limitations, and the failure to exhaust administrative
remedies. Defendants also argue that plaintiff's
claims lack merit. Defendants' motion should be granted,
and this case should be dismissed.
February 19, 2016, plaintiff was admitted to Oregon State
Hospital (OSH) in an extremely agitated state. Howard Decl.
¶ 3; Lang Decl. Att. 3 at 3. Plaintiff's symptoms
included “delusions, paranoia, disorganized thoughts,
disorganized behavior, impulsivity, mania, mood instability,
pressured speech, aggression, poor sleep, labile mood, and
poor self-care.” Lang Decl. Att. 3 at 2. Plaintiff
verbally threatened OSH staff and exhibited other threatening
behavior. Id. Att. 2 at 165-66, 170-76. Dr.
Ranganathan administered medications to plaintiff on an
emergency basis without obtaining his consent. Id.
Att. 2 at 170. Although Dr. Ranganathan attempted to provide
plaintiff with information about proposed medications, he
“denied having a mental illness and denied that the
proposed medications had any benefit for him.”
Id. Att. 3 at 3.
February 26, 2016, Nadia Babiker, an OSH medication educator,
also attempted to discuss proposed medications with
plaintiff. Id. Att. 3 at 3, 11.
March 2, 2016, Dr. Ben Jew, a consulting psychiatrist,
likewise attempted to provide information to plaintiff
regarding the proposed medications. Lang Decl. Att. 3 at 3.
On March 3, 2016, the Chief Medical Officer of OSH approved
the use of the proposed medications. Id.
March 7, 2016, OSH provided plaintiff with a Notice and
Hearing Rights Form for Approval of Involuntary
Administration of Significant Procedures. Id. ¶
6 & Att. 2 at 16-18. OSH bore the burden of establishing
by a preponderance of the evidence that it met the criteria
to medicate plaintiff without his consent. Id. Att.
3 at 5 (citing Or. Rev. Stat. § 183.450(2) and
Harris v. SAIF, 292 Or. 683, 690 (1982)). Plaintiff
requested an administrative hearing to contest the notice.
Lang Decl. ¶ 6.
March 15, 2016, a hearing was held before an Administrative
Law Judge (ALJ) from the Office of Administrative Hearings.
Id. ¶ 7. Plaintiff testified and appeared with
counsel, an attorney with Disability Rights Oregon.
Id. Att. 3 at 1.
March 16, 2016, the ALJ issued a final order. Id.
Att. 3. The ALJ found that without OSH's proposed
treatment, plaintiff risked “continued deterioration of
his mental health, continued danger to himself and others,
and continued need for intensive, hospital-level
services.” Id. Att. 3 at 4. Specifically, the
The evidence demonstrated that the proposed medications will
likely restore, or prevent deterioration of, his mental
health. Additionally, the evidence established that the
proposed medications would decrease the symptoms of
[plaintiff's] mental illness. The evidence supports a
conclusion that lack of medication will lead to the worsening
of [plaintiff's] condition.
The evidence demonstrated that the proposed medications are
the most appropriate treatment, according to current clinical
practice, and the least intrusive means with which to treat
[plaintiff]'s condition. Less intrusive procedures would
be ineffective without medication to treat the symptoms of
[plaintiff]'s mental illness. Upon his admission to the
institution, [plaintiff]'s aggression and agitation were
too severe to allow him out of seclusion until the emergency
medications reduced his symptoms.
The evidence establishes that institution wishes to treat
[plaintiff] for dangerousness, as defined by OAR
309-114-0005(4). Since September 15, 2015, [plaintiff] has
made numerous suicide threats, including one that caused him
to be hospitalized and others made while he was jailed. While
[plaintiff] denies any current suicidal ideation, his recent
threats demonstrate that his disorder and resulting labile
mood put him at risk of harm to himself. Since
[plaintiff]'s admission to the institution, he has
engaged in physically threatening behavior and made ...