Alex Azar Nominated as HHS Secretary

The White House just nominated Alex Azar as top health official, replacing Tom Price after his private plane scandal

Trump picks former drug company exec who once probed Whitewater to replace high-flying Tom Price at HHS – and says he'll be a 'star' for lower drug prices

On Nov. 13, President Trump nominated Alex Azar as secretary of Health and Human Services, a role that was vacated after Tom Price resigned in late September after it was reported that he spent $1 million of taxpayers' dollars on private air travel while on the job. 'He will be a star for better healthcare and lower drug prices!' His earlier stint was general counsel and deputy secretary at the department in the George W Bush administration.

Azar served as HHS's No. 2 under Secretary Mike Leavitt, who said he asked Azar to oversee the department's regulatory process.

Democrats like Wyden, however, expect Azar to "faithfully implement" the Affordable Care Act.

Azar, 50, served as deputy secretary in the Department of Health and Human Services from 2005 to 2007, under George W. Bush.

"There will be a piece of legislation passes this year that is called 'the repeal of Obamacare, ' " Azar said. "I think he would be of particular value given the fact that.so far a repeal bill has not occurred and they're going to need to make their imprint on existing laws through replacing the ideology underpinning it".

Azar left Lilly in January, several months after another senior executive was named to succeed then-CEO John Lechleiter.

The firm represents a sophisticated client base of Fortune 100 life sciences, health care services companies, and providers as well as innovative, venture and private equity backed companies in diagnostics, digital health, health information technology and health care services.

Trump has been highly critical of the industry that Azar comes from, saying that drug companies are "getting away with murder" and threatening to use the federal government's buying power to bring down prices. A lawyer by training, Azar previously clerked for Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court.

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