Washington physician facing lawsuit over patient misconduct

James Grierson, MD, of Marysville, Wash., has been sued by a former patient for sexual misconduct, HeraldNet reported Jan. 20. 

Renton, Wash.-based Providence, where Dr. Grierson worked at the time, was also included in the suit filed this month. 

Dr. Grierson's license was suspended by the state's Department of Health for three years in September 2022 after he admitted to misconduct. Before reinstatement, he is required to pay a $2,000 fine and complete a mental health evaluation focused on sexual misconduct. 

Stephen Campbell, MD, chief medical officer of Providence Medical Group Northwest, asked the Department of Health not to suspend Dr. Grierson in October 2022. 

"It is not my place to speculate on why Dr. Grierson had a recent lapse in professional judgment," Dr. Campbell told the department, according to the publication. "But it is my place to declare this lapse to be inconsistent with what I perceive as Dr. Grierson's core values. I would request that, given Dr. Grierson's history, he not be reprimanded any further, as any punishment could very well negatively impact the many members of Snohomish and Island County whom Dr. Grierson serves."

The lawsuit alleges that Dr. Grierson delivered the patient's baby in 2020, diagnosed her with post-traumatic stress disorder and began a sexual relationship with her in 2021, which the lawsuit describes as traumatizing, according to records obtained by HeraldNet. It also claims he sent inappropriate messages to the patient over MyChart.

The patient informed a counselor of the misconduct, who then filed a mandatory report in August 2021. The lawsuit alleges that Dr. Grierson asked the patient to sign a recanting statement, according to the publication.

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