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$23,000 Settlement Against Pennsylvania Dental Healthcare Company for Inadequate Dental Care

Charles Talbert settled with Correctional Dental Associates (CDA) and Dental Practitioner Dr. Schneider for $23,000 in a lawsuit brought by him for inadequate dental treatment while housed in the Philadelphia Department of Prisons (PDP).

While being held in the PDP, Talbert requested extensive dental work to repair his damaged and decaying teeth. He stated in his recent suit that CDA, Schneider, and other dentists (Dr. Young and Dr. Patel) were aware of his need for anesthesia during treatment due to his innate fear of needles. This phobia he stated was well documented on requests, sick call slips, grievances, and previous lawsuits. Nonetheless, CDA dentists ignored Talbert’s phobia and attempted to proceed with his dental surgery without anesthesia.

Talbert claimed that this was deliberate and malicious. He stated that CDA dentists violated his civil rights by not consulting with his previous physician concerning his condition and phobia, continuing with a standard of care that did not meet prevailing practices in the dental community, and failing to properly evaluate which teeth needed extraction and which did not.

He also stated that the dentists were retaliating against him for previous grievances and lawsuits he has filed. They ignored his medical needs as established by past professionals and deprived him of pain medication and antibiotics prescribed to him by other physicians. Talbert said this willful misconduct was performed specifically to cause him pain and suffering.

Talbert claimed that these actions violated established practices of dental professionals outside the prison setting, departmental policies and procedures of the PDP, the United States Constitution’s First Amendment prohibition against retaliation for exercising his freedom of speech, and its Fourteenth Amendment guarantee to equal protection.

CDA entered into a settlement agreement with Talbert on July 20, 2021. The prison healthcare provider agreed to pay Talbert $23,000 in exchange for a dismissal of all defendants except Schneider and a release of all claims surrounding his dental care at any time prior to July 29, 2019. United States District Court Judge Mark Kearney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania said the $23,000 was payable within 90 days or Talbert would be free to renew his claims against all parties. See: Talbert v. Correctional Dental Associates et al, USDC, E. Dist. PA, Case No. 2:18-cv-05112-MAK. 

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Related legal case

Talbert v. Correctional Dental Associates et al