Trump to nominate 'star' to lead HHS

Alex Azar

He will be a star for better healthcare and lower drug prices! For those opposed to the path Trump has been taking Health and Human Services, Alex Azar symbolizes yet another attack on the progress made by the Affordable Care Act with his policy preferences aimed at undercutting and reversing numerous ACA's provisions.

Azar worked at Eli Lilly for a decade, including five years as president of its USA affiliate Lilly USA unit, and left the company in January, according to his LinkedIn page. It will be interesting to see if Azar attempts to unravel his personal holdings prior to confirmation hearings, or go the route that Trump and many of his other Cabinet picks have and just ignore the norm of divestiture for public service. "I will vigorously oppose this nomination".

Republicans were supportive with Senate health committee head Lamar Alexander of Tennessee describing Azar as a qualified, experienced nominee. Former George W Bush appointee and industry insider Alex Azar is the most recent swamp creature to emerge from the MAGA train.

The HHS is responsible for advising the President on matters of health, welfare, and income security programmes.

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Premier, an alliance of approximately 3,900 US hospitals and health systems and roughly 150,000 other providers and organizations, said the organization worked with Azar when he served under the Bush administration During his tenure, the agency worked on some of the early value-based payment models, including the Hospital Quality Improvement Demonstration project. "This is someone who understands the complex system we've built-and the warped channel incentives baked into the system".

Chip Kahn, president and CEO of the Federation of American Hospitals, the national advocacy organization for investor-owned hospitals, made similar comments. With the Alex Azar pick, Donald Trump is choosing someone with experience in both the industry in general and the agency in particular he is meant to lead. HLC President Mary R. Grealy said she believes that once confirmed, Azar will be able to "hit the ground running", and will be help bring a "patient-centered, value-focused approach to healthcare policymaking". "I don't think it's possible to reform the system unless you truly understand this very complicated system we've created", says Adam Fein, president of Pembroke Consulting.

Azar said about joining the company.

As HHS Secretary, Azar will be leading the Administration's efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act and, among other things, address drug pricing and reimbursement. He also pointed to Eli Lilly raising drug prices by double digits while Azar was an executive at the company.

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