Politics

Trump Announces New HHS Secretary On Twitter

President Donald Trump announced on Twitter Monday that he is nominating Alex Azar to replace Tom Price as secretary of Health and Human Services.

“Happy to announce, I am nominating Alex Azar to be the next HHS Secretary,” Trump said in a tweet Monday during his tour of several Asian countries. “He will be a star for better healthcare and lower drug prices!”

Azar is a veteran of HHS, having served as deputy secretary under former President George W. Bush from 2005 to 2007.

“He is one of the most competent people I know,” former HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson told Politico in October. “He brings terrific experience from both the private and public sector leading large and complicated organizations. He knows HHS and the career staff know and respect him.”

After his tenure at HHS, where he served as general counsel, Azar spent several years at pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly & Co as senior vice president of corporate affairs and communications, then joined the company’s U.S. affiliate, Lilly USA, LLC, where he was appointed president from 2012 to 2017. Azar left Lilly in January, 2017.

Price departed HHS in September in the wake of allegations that he misused taxpayer funds to charter private jets on more than two dozen occasions. The HHS office of the Inspector General is still reviewing how Price’s travel was approved by the department.

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