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Appeals Court Rules KU Did Not Discriminate

KSAL StaffNovember 14, 2014

A federal appeals court has ruled that the University of Kansas School of Medicine did not discriminate against a disabled student when it rescinded her admission in 2011 because she could not physically meet its requirements.

The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals sided Friday with the university in the lawsuit brought by Emily McCulley, who suffers from spinal muscular atrophy. The disability requires her to use a wheelchair for mobility and limits her arm strength.

It found that requested accommodations for her disability would fundamentally alter a medical education that trains her to care for patients in emergency situations where assistance is unavailable.

The court said that providing a staff surrogate to lift patients, administer basic life support and perform other tasks for the student would make her an observer.

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