Doctor Surrenders License After Ohio Sex Abuse Scandal
April 16, 2021 – Ted W. Grace, MD, a physician implicated in the decades-old Ohio State University sexual abuse scandal, has relinquished his license to practice medicine and surgery in the state of Ohio, according to the State Medical Board.
The surrender is permanent, says Joel Whetstone, a spokesperson for the medical commission. The administrative hearing for Grace, which was scheduled for April 20-23, is canceled, he said.
Grace, who served as director of student health services at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, resigned from that position, with a replacement appointed earlier this week on Southern Illinois reported Thursday. Grace resigned on March 12, a spokesperson for the university said.
“He was the first person who was held responsible for this mess,” says Stephen Snyder-Hill, one of the many students who complained that Richard Strauss, MD, a former team doctor and center doctor. health care provider, had examined and inappropriately touched him. Grace supervised Strauss. Snyder-Hill complained in 1995; when he asked for a meeting and got one, his complaints were dismissed, he said.
In mid-March, a task force appointed by Gov. Mike DeWine to review the state medical board’s handling of the investigation involving Strauss released its final report. As a result, the board reopened 91 cases of sexual irregularity that had been closed. He also recommended the reopening of 42 other non-reporting cases, including an investigation against Grace.
The medical board noted that during Grace’s tenure as director of student health services at OSU, Grace was aware of widespread rumors that Strauss inappropriately touched students. The board also said Grace was aware of at least three separate complaints against Strauss, including that of Snyder-Hill. While the board says Grace gave Strauss a verbal warning, it notes that he did not report the events to the state medical board. Grace also sent a letter to the second student who complained, incorrectly claiming that no complaints about Strauss had been reported before. After a third complaint, Grace suspended Strauss from seeing students at the health center, but did not appear for medical advice, the correspondence says. Strauss died by suicide in 2005.
The OSU launched an independent investigation in 2018 and, in May 2019, reported that at least 177 former students were abused by Strauss while working on campus from 1978 to 1998 and university staff had failed to investigate and take appropriate action.
Snyder-Hill, a staunch LGBTQ advocate, author, retired army major and dietitian in Columbus, was overseeing COVID-19 vaccinations as a public health officer when his lawyer called him to tell him the news. While the licensing is good news and “a monumental step in this process,” says Snyder-Hill, more needs to be done. “I’m not going to stop. I will continue to make this worse. My goal is exactly what the Ohio State Governor said, that any medical professional who has not reported [impropriety] be held responsible. “
Snyder-Hill says he is now focusing on a psychologist who was in the meeting a long time ago, when he was told he was “confused and deceived” about the abuse.
While the Ohio State Medical Board makes decisions about a doctor’s license in Ohio, it does not have authority over their license in another state. The Illinois state licensing website on Friday listed Grace’s license as active, without any disciplinary action.
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