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Vivek Murthy

Surgeon General

Vivek Murthy has extensive public health and presidential advisement experience stemming from roles as the U.S. surgeon general and as a public health advisee within the Obama administration. Murthy served as a public health advisor to the Biden-Harris team in March 2020 on the campaign trail and now leads the Biden-Harris Transition COVID-19 Advisory Board. During his time as U.S. surgeon general, Murthy publicly condemned domestic and international use of conversion therapy. Murthy actively speaks out against political ideology taking precedence over evidence-based science at the federal level and has signaled support for access to contraception and choice in reproductive health.

Murthy Was Reported To Be President-Elect Biden’s Pick For Surgeon General On Dec. 3, 2020

POLITICO Reported Biden Selected Murthy To Serve As Surgeon General. “Vivek Murthy, the former U.S. surgeon general under Obama, will return to that role, but with a broader portfolio that will include acting as the top medical expert and public face of the [pandemic response] effort.” [Politico, 12/3/20]

Murthy Will Have An Expanded Portfolio To Address The COVID-19 Pandemic. “‘It will be like an amplified, [Surgeon General] on steroids plus,’ the source close to Biden said, adding that Murthy will have a ‘broader portfolio’ that covers both the immediate pandemic crisis and, once it ends, more systemic health care issues including substance abuse, mental health and racial disparities in health care.” [Politico, 12/3/20]

Murthy Was A Top Candidate For HHS Secretary But Is Now Biden’s Pick for Surgeon General. “Murthy, who has been deeply involved in the formulation of Biden’s Covid-19 plans and has been briefing the president-elect multiple times a week since the early months of the pandemic, had been a leading candidate to run the Department of Health and Human Services, but concerns arose over his lack of experience running a large agency with tens of thousands of employees and a budget in the billions.” [Politico, 12/3/20]

Murthy Was Originally Reported To Be A Candidate For The Department Of Health And Human Services (HHS) Secretary On Nov. 7, 2020

POLITICO Reported Former U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy Is Among The Top Picks For HHS Secretary. “In the mix to lead the Department of Health and Human Services are former Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and North Carolina Health Secretary Mandy Cohen… Murthy has been part of a core group of doctors briefing Biden on the pandemic since early spring and he was tapped for the new coronavirus task force Biden plans to activate during the transition.” [Politico, 11/7/20]

CBS News Reported Murthy As A Potential Pick For HHS Secretary With Biden Urged To Pick A Person Of Color Amid The COVID-19 Pandemic’s Toll On Minority Groups. “Another top contender is Dr. Vivek Murthy, a former surgeon general, whose family emigrated from India and who has been a top Biden adviser, a person advising the transition said. Biden has said he will prioritize diversity in his Cabinet picks. The racial disparities in the health care system have become a crucial issue as communities of color have borne an overwhelming burden of the coronavirus pandemic.” [NBC News, 11/19/20]

POLITICO Announced Murthy May Also Be Appointed A Top Position Within The Biden-Harris Administration If Not Appointed To Lead HHS. “If not picked to run HHS, Murthy is likely to be appointed to another prominent health post in the administration, several people close to the transition said — potentially as part of the White House’s Covid-19 response team.” [Politico, 11/24/20]

Murthy Is Reportedly In Charge Of Vetting Candidates For Other HHS Positions Through His Healthcare Advisor Role On The Biden-Harris Campaign Team. “Murthy, 43, served as Surgeon General under President Obama and is currently heading up Biden's healthcare team on the campaign. He is said to have a ‘lock’ on becoming the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) should Biden get elected, and candidates for other jobs within HHS are reportedly being vetted through him.” [MedPage Today, 8/12/20]

Murthy Signaled Support For International LGBTQ Rights As The U.S. Surgeon General

Murthy Expressed Concern For The Marginalization Of LGBTQ Communities In The U.S. And Abroad. “The White House’s open condemnation of conversion therapy is a major symbolic victory for LGBTQ Americans (and could indeed become a codified one, if the push to adopt a nationwide law banning the therapy is taken up in earnest), but some of Jarrett and Murthy’s responses to Tumblr users were even more enlightening and invite broader discussions about the marginalization of LGBTQ persons in both domestic and foreign contexts.” [Young Professionals In Foreign Policy, 4/22/15]

Murthy Denounced Conversion Therapy Via A Town Hall Discussion On The White House Tumblr. “‘As America’s Doctor, my job is to help raise awareness about sound medical practices and the steps we can take together to improve America’s health,’ said U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy today during a town hall discussion on Tumblr. ‘Conversion therapy is not sound medical practice. Moreover, we all need to work together to build greater understanding and acceptance throughout our society. Doctors can and should be part of that effort.’” [The Advocate, 4/10/15]

Murthy Expressed Pro-Birth Control And Pro-Human Rights Sentiments Via Twitter

Murthy Tweeted Support For The Affordable Care Act For Giving Women ‘Choice And Access To Contraception.’ “Murthy also drew ire from conservatives for a tweet in which he lauded the Affordable Care Act for giving women ‘choice and access to contraception,’ adding, ‘what’s wrong with choice?’ When queried about his position on contraception by Wyoming Republican Sen. Mike Enzi last February, Murthy said it was ‘informed by science,’ and added that when women have access to contraception, mothers are healthier.” [Los Angeles Times, 12/15/14]

Murthy Tweeted Support For Diversity In High Office Positions And Reflected On His Parents’ Experience As Immigrants. 

[Vivek Murthy, Twitter, 8/12/20]

Murthy Issued A Series Of Tweets That Prioritized A Need For Evidence-Based Science Over Political Ideology To Address The COVID-19 Pandemic.

[Vivek Murthy, Twitter, 8/23/20]

[Vivek Murthy, Twitter, 8/23/20]

[Vivek Murthy, Twitter, 8/23/20]

[Vivek Murthy, Twitter, 8/23/20]

[Vivek Murthy, Twitter, 8/23/20]

[Vivek Murthy, Twitter, 8/23/20]

 

 

 

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