Biden to name nurse as acting surgeon general: report

Biden to name nurse as acting surgeon general: report
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President Biden is expected to name a nurse as acting surgeon general after former President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump State Department appointee arrested in connection with Capitol riot Intelligence community investigating links between lawmakers, Capitol rioters Michelle Obama slams 'partisan actions' to 'curtail access to ballot box' MORE’s surgeon general was asked to resign last week, The Washington Post reported Monday.

The newly sworn-in president plans to name Susan Orsega, a nurse and officer in the U.S. Public Health Service corps, as among the first nurses to serve in the role, two people with knowledge of her selection told the Post.

A spokesperson from the Department of Health and Human Services told The Hill on Tuesday the department is expecting an announcement as soon as Tuesday.


The White House did not immediately respond to The Hill’s request for comment.

Jerome AdamsJerome AdamsThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden argues for legislative patience, urgent action amid crisis Biden to name nurse as acting surgeon general: report Judge drops case against former surgeon general over alleged virus restrictions violation MORE, who served as surgeon general in the Trump administration during the coronavirus pandemic, resigned at the request of Biden and his administration. The Washington Post first reported ahead of Inauguration Day that Biden was expected to ask Adams to resign. 

Biden had already announced in December that he would nominate Vivek MurthyVivek MurthyMurthy vows to focus on mental health effects of pandemic if confirmed as surgeon general The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by The AIDS Institute - Senate ref axes minimum wage, House votes today on relief bill Watch live: Biden surgeon general pick testifies at confirmation hearing MORE to return to the position of surgeon general after he served during the Obama administration. 

Erica Schwartz, the deputy surgeon general, decided to retire after not being chosen as acting surgeon general, sources told the Post last week. 

Murthy, who was fired by Trump in 2017, still has to be confirmed by the Senate before taking on the job, meaning someone needs to work in Adams's place in the meantime. 


The confirmation hearings for Murthy, who served as surgeon general during former President Obama’s administration, have not yet been scheduled. 

“The committee is ready to go with an aggressive scheduling of hearings once we organize, with nominations being a top priority,” Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee spokesperson Madeleine Russak told the Post.

Nurses have served as surgeon general previously, including during former President George W. Bush's administration and in an acting capacity under Trump. 

Her selection would come as the country continues to deal with the coronavirus pandemic, which has infected more than 25 million in the U.S. and killed more than 420,000, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

In his first week in the White House, Biden has sought to prioritize his coronavirus response, after the Trump's administration's response to the pandemic had been deeply criticized. 

The president has retained some health experts that worked under Trump, including Anthony FauciAnthony FauciFauci: 'Very nice' that Trump told people to get vaccinated at CPAC Neanderthal museum weighs in on Biden mask comments Abbott defends scrapping mask mandate: It 'isn't going to make that big of a change' MORE, the U.S.'s top infectious disease expert, while letting others move on, such as Deborah BirxDeborah BirxFauci defends Birx: 'She had to live in the White House' CNN's Brianna Keilar calls out Birx 'apology tour' Biden to name nurse as acting surgeon general: report MORE, the former head of the coronavirus task force. 

Updated Tuesday at 11:00 a.m.