GRINNELL, Iowa (AP) — A jury has awarded $4.5 million to a former employee who sued an Iowa hospital for age bias and retaliation.

The Des Moines Register reports (http://dmreg.co/2vZt66U ) that the jury's decision Monday came after a 10-day trial of Grinnell Regional Medical Center and two administrators. The lawsuit brought by Gregory Hawkins said the hospital fired him in June 2015 from his post as lab director while in remission from breast cancer and hired a younger replacement.

His attorney alleged that Hawkins was targeted because he'd declined an order to retire following his initial diagnosis in November 2013.

The hospital's attorneys deny the firing and subsequent hiring of a new director had anything to do with Hawkins' age or cancer diagnosis. A hospital spokeswoman says the hospital intends to appeal.

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Information from: The Des Moines Register, http://www.desmoinesregister.com