Morning round-up
9:28 am
Tue August 23, 2011

Morning headlines: Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Mo. state senators meet today to examine natural disasters

A special Senate committee that was created this summer is scheduled to meet today in the state Capitol building. So far in 2011, Missouri has been hit by a historic blizzard, powerful tornadoes in Joplin, St. Louis and Sedalia and heavy flooding along the Missouri and Mississippi rivers. The Senate committee was created to recommend ways the Legislature can help with local recovery efforts.

Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon did not include disaster recovery on the agenda for the special legislative session that he called yesterday. He says damage assessments from the natural disasters have not yet been completed. The special legislative session is scheduled to start on Sept. 6.

Ill. health care workers lose licenses under new law

Illinois is revoking the licenses of 11 health care workers because a new law bars registered sex offenders and people convicted of violent felonies from working in the field. The law allows the state to permanently revoke licenses without a hearing.

On Monday, the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation released the names of the health professionals losing their licenses, including six doctors. Department officials say they'll release more names later.

Several health care workers have filed lawsuits against the department arguing the law shouldn't apply to them. Spokeswoman Sue Hofer says the department won't release the names in pending cases until they've been decided in court.

State Sen. Kirk Dillard says the department is acting to protect patients. The Hinsdale Republican was a chief sponsor of the legislation.

Wash U to advance war on cancer

Researchers at Washington University in St. Louis are taking part in a national study seeking to use genetic data to search for proteins that are abnormally made by cancer cells. The project is supported by the National Cancer Institute.

The relatively new field is called cancer proteomics. Washington University medical professor and breast cancer expert Matthew Ellis says the hope is that the successful detection of cancer proteins in the blood can be used for cancer screening, diagnosis and therapy.

Catholic author, historian dies at 96

The Rev. William Barnaby Faherty, a priest and novelist who wrote more than 40 books, has died. Catholic officials say Faherty died yesterday at Saint Louis University Hospital, after suffering from declining health. He was 96.

The St. Louis Review says Faherty was ordained as a priest in 1944. He was a prolific author in several genres and was working on a book about early St. Louis Archbishop Peter Kenrick at the time of his death.  His novel, "A Wall for San Sebastian," was made into a movie in 1968, starring Anthony Quinn.

A funeral Mass will be at 7:30 p.m. tomorrow at St. Francis Xavier Church in St. Louis. Visitation will be from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the church prior to the service.