On Monday, November 13, the President nominated Alex Azar to become the new Secretary of Health and Human Services. Azar will fill the vacancy left when Tom Price was forced out earlier this year due to his travel expenses. Azar worked at HHS as the Department’s General Counsel and Deputy Secretary. The focus during upcoming hearings before the Senate HELP Committee and the Finance Committee (which has the actual approval of his nomination) is likely to be his ten years of work at the Indianapolis-based Eli Lilly drug company. Since Mr. Trump has made claims that he will bring down prescription drug prices it was an interesting pick.
The nomination shows the continued role of Indiana-based officials (CMS Director Verma). Mr. Azar supported the House-passed ACA repeal bill. He has also spoken against controls on drug pricing.