United States District Court, D. Minnesota
Claire J. Lee, Plaintiff,
Regions Hospital, Health Partners, Inc., and Park Nicollet Clinics, Defendants.
Jean Lee, Carolin J. Nearing, Larson King, LLP, counsel for
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
Katherine Menendez United States Magistrate Judge
plaintiff, Claire Lee, drove herself to Regions Hospital on
October 6, 2013, complaining of depression, thoughts of
self-harm, and other mental health concerns. [Am. Compl., ECF
No. 3, ¶ 7.] Ms. Lee brings this lawsuit under the
Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act, 42 U.S.C.
§ 1395dd (EMTALA), claiming that the staff at Regions
Hospital refused to provide her with adequate treatment. [Am.
Compl. ¶ 38.] She alleges violations of other state
statutes and a federal regulation as well, including the
Minnesota Government Data Practices Act, the Minnesota Health
Records Act, and the federal and state Patient Bill of
Rights. [Id. ¶¶ 41-49.] Ms. Lee also
brings a tort claim alleging intentional infliction of
emotional distress under state law arising out of the same
incidents. [Id. ¶¶ 50-53.]
matter is now before the Court on the Defendants' motion
for summary judgment. [Defs.' Mot., ECF No. 30.]
Defendants argue that their staff members' actions during
Ms. Lee's visit to Regions Hospital did not violate
EMTALA; that they are not subject to liability under the
Minnesota Government Data Practices Act; that they did not
violate the Minnesota Health Records Act; that Ms. Lee is not
entitled to sue under the federal or state Patient Bill of
Rights; and that Ms. Lee has failed to state a claim for
intentional infliction of emotional distress. [Defs.'
Mem., ECF No. 31.] The Defendants submitted several
affidavits and exhibits in support of their summary-judgment
motion. [See ECF Nos. 33-43.]
requested an extension of the deadline for her response to
Defendants' motion for summary judgment, which was
granted on October 4, 2017. The deadline for her response was
extended until November 2, 2017. [Order, ECF No. 50.] To
date, Ms. Lee has failed to submit any response to
Defendants' motion for summary judgment. For the reasons
set forth below, the Court recommends that the
Defendants' motion for summary judgment be granted.
The Summary Judgment Standard
judgment is appropriate when, drawing all reasonable
inferences in favor of the nonmoving party, the record shows
that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and
that the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of
law. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a); Celotex Corp. v. Catrett,
477 U.S. 317, 322-23 (1986). The moving party must
demonstrate the absence of any genuine issue of material
fact. Celotex, 477 U.S. at 322. When the moving
party properly supports a motion for summary judgment, the
nonmoving party must present admissible evidence showing that
specific facts exist that create a genuine issue for trial.
Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 256
(1986); Wingate v. Gage Cnty. Sch. Dist., No. 34,
528 F.3d 1074, 1078-79 (8th Cir. 2008).
noted above, in her Amended Complaint, Ms. Lee asserts claims
under the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act
(EMTALA), the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act, the
Minnesota Health Records Act, and the federal or state
Patient Bill of Rights. She also asserts a common law claim
for intentional infliction of emotional distress. The Court
addresses each of these claims below.
Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act
imposes two requirements on hospitals with emergency
departments-to screen and stabilize patients. 42 U.S.C.
§ 1395dd(a)-(b). To sustain an EMTALA screening claim, a
plaintiff must show:
(1) defendant has both a Medicare provider agreement with the
Secretary of Health and Human Services and an emergency room
or emergency department; (2) plaintiff went to the
defendant's emergency room or emergency department; (3)
plaintiff requested examination or treatment; (4) plaintiff
had an emergency medical condition; (5) defendant did not
provide plaintiff with an appropriate medical screening
examination; and (6) as a direct result of the conduct of
defendant, plaintiff suffered personal harm.
Hunt ex rel. Hunt v. Lincoln County Mem'l Hosp.,
317 F.3d 891, 893 n.4 (8th Cir. 2003) (quoting Hunt v.
Lincoln County Mem'l Hosp., No. 4:00-cv-982, 2001 WL
34062320 (E.D. Mo. Nov. 29, 2001)). For a stabilization
claim, a plaintiff must show: (1) defendant had actual
knowledge of the individual's unstabilized emergency
medical condition; and (2) defendant did not provide further
medical examination and treatment required to stabilize the
medical condition or failed to transfer the plaintiff to
another medical facility. See Summers v. Baptist Medical
Center Arkadelphia, 91 F.3d 1132, 1140 (8th Cir. 1996).
A plaintiff may sue for violation of either or both
requirements. 42 U.S.C. § 1395dd(d)(2)(A).