Today The White House issued a statement in which President Trump announced his plan to nominate Stephen Hahn, M.D. to the position of FDA commissioner. Hahn is a radiation and medical oncologist, and currently serves as the chief medical executive at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.
According to The Washington Post, current Acting FDA Commissioner Ned Sharpless will return to his position as director of the National Cancer Institute while HHS official Brett Giroir will step in at FDA until Hahn is confirmed.
The Post reports that Sharpless’ term ends Friday, and it could only be extended if the White House named a successor—however, the White House cannot do so because paperwork has not been completed.
The Washington Post is reporting that FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D. is resigning. Gottlieb had only been at this post since May 2017 but has been pushing a number of initiatives across the industries in which the FDA regulates. Within the food industry, he has been supportive of taking additional policy steps to improve food safety oversight, and last year he revealed concern over some food recall practices.
“All of us at HHS are proud of the remarkable work Commissioner Gottlieb has done at the FDA,” said HHS Secretary Alex Azar in a statement. “He has been an exemplary public health leader, aggressive advocate for American patients, and passionate promoter of innovation. …The public health of our country is better off for the work Scott and the entire FDA team have done over the last two years.”
According to the Post article, Gottlieb wants to spend more time with his family, as he has been commuting between Washington and his home in Connecticut on a weekly basis. The article also reports that President Trump did not want Gottlieb to leave his post.