Trump turns to drug industry for his new health secretary
WASHINGTON » Turning to an industry he’s rebuked, President Donald Trump on Monday picked a former top pharmaceutical and government executive to be his health secretary.
If confirmed, Alex Azar would oversee a $1 trillion department responsible for major health insurance programs, including “Obamacare,” as well as medical research, food and drug safety, and public health.
The nomination of Azar is unusual because Health and Human Services secretaries have come from the ranks of elected officials such as governors and leaders in academia and medicine, not industries regulated by the department.
“He will be a star for better healthcare and lower drug prices!” Trump tweeted.
Azar, 50, a lawyer by training, has spent most of the last 10 years with pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly, rising to president of its key U.S. affiliate before leaving in January to start his own consulting firm.