Dan Margolies

HEALTH EDITOR/REPORTER

Dan Margolies is editor in charge of health news at KCUR, the public radio station in Kansas City.  Dan joined KCUR in April 2014. In a long and varied journalism career, he has worked as a reporter for the Kansas City Business Journal, The Kansas City Star and Reuters. In a previous life, he was a lawyer. He has also worked as a media insurance underwriter and project development director for a video production firm.

Dan was born in Brooklyn, NY, and moved to Kansas City with his family when he was eight years old. He majored in philosophy at Washington University in St. Louis and holds law and journalism degrees from Boston University.

He is a two-time finalist for the Gerald Loeb Awards for Distinguished Business and Financial Journalism and the recipient of numerous first-place awards from the Missouri Press Association, Kansas City Press Club and the Association of Area Business Publications.

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The American Humanist Association on Wednesday sued Kansas prison officials, alleging the Topeka Correctional Facility promotes Christianity in violation of the First Amendment.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Kansas City, claims the prison displays prayers and messages on prison bulletin boards, has erected an eight-foot cross in one of its multi-purpose rooms and often broadcasts movies with Christian themes on inmates’ televisions.

University of Kansas Hospital

The University of Kansas Hospital denies allegations by a patient that it wrongly diagnosed her with pancreatic cancer and then covered it up.

In an answer filed this week, the hospital says that many of the allegations made by Wendy Ann Noon Berner “reference undisputable hearsay and speculation, and many would arguably constitute defamation” if they were not part of a lawsuit.

The hospital’s 18-page answer broadly disputes Berner’s allegations of malpractice and cover-up, and terms many of them “vague and ambiguous.”

University of Kansas Hospital

Two Kansas hospitals earned spots on U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Hospitals” list.

U.S. News ranked The University of Kansas Hospital best in the state and Stormont Vail Hospital in Topeka second best.

Bob Page, president and CEO of KU Hospital, says the ranking is a tribute to KU’s consistency.

“This is once again a testament to our ability to not be the one-hit wonder, but rather be the organization that year in, year out, is very consistent with its performance,” Page says.

cancer.gov

The director of the University of Kansas Cancer Center says it will continue to pursue “comprehensive” status after the National Cancer Institute denied it that coveted designation this week.

Dr. Roy Jensen says it typically takes 10 to 15 years to attain comprehensive status. The KU Cancer Center only received NCI designation in 2012, so the denial was not entirely unexpected.

Jensen, who has led the cancer center since 2004, says it’s not giving up, though.

“We’re just going to be absolutely fearless in moving forward with this initiative," he says.

University of Kansas Hospital

The once-anonymous patient at the center of a whistleblower action filed against KU Hospital by one of its own pathologists is now suing the hospital herself for fraud, negligence and civil conspiracy.

Tristan Bowersox / Flickr Creative Commons

A former University of Kansas student who alleges she was raped in a college dorm can proceed with her lawsuit against the university, a federal judge has decided.

U.S. District Judge J. Thomas Marten on Thursday ruled that the dismissal of a separate class action lawsuit against KU over sexual assaults on campus did not preclude Daisy Tackett’s individual lawsuit against the university.

KU had moved to dismiss Tackett’s lawsuit, arguing she was trying to relitigate issues that had been raised in the class action case. Marten disagreed and denied KU’s motion.

RILEY COUNTY AND LAWRENCE POLICE DEPARTMENTS

Riley County and Lawrence police issued a plea to the public for information on a serial rape suspect in 14 rapes or attempted rapes since 2000 near the Kansas State and University of Kansas campuses.

At a joint news conference Thursday in Manhattan, the home of K-State, they said they believed an attempted rape near the campus that took place two years ago was linked to the suspect.

All of the assaults occurred off-campus. The victims were all college students.

(vhmh) / flickr Creative Commons

This story was updated at 2:45 p.m. to include the comments of the plaintiffs' attorney.

A Leawood, Kansas, couple whose home was raided by a police tactical team in a bungled SWAT-like search for marijuana will get their day in court after all.

The couple, both retired CIA agents, sued the Johnson County Board of Commissioners, Johnson County Sheriff Frank Denning and seven sheriff’s deputies over the botched 2012 raid, but a federal judge threw out the case in December 2015.

Dan Margolies / KCUR

KU Medical Center on Thursday officially opened its new health education building, an $82 million, 170,000-square-foot facility that will serve as the primary teaching venue for its medical, nursing and allied health profession schools.

The state-of-the-art building, at the northeast corner of Rainbow Boulevard and 39th Street, was funded with $26 million in state money, $21 million from the University of Kansas Medical Center, $25 million from the Hall Family Foundation and the rest in additional private money.

Bloomsberries / flickr Creative Commons

A lawsuit challenging Kansas’ civil commitment of sexually violent predators has been dismissed. The plaintiffs remain involuntarily confined at Larned State Hospital.

Since 1994, Kansas has required that people found to be sexually violent, and likely to reoffend, be involuntary confined in a state facility and undergo treatment.

The 20-plus patients who sued claimed high staff turnover and inadequate access to treatment made it extremely difficult to complete the program, and had left them in indefinite confinement in prison-like conditions.

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