Bush Taps Kentucky Doctor To Be Next Surgeon General
President Bush has nominated James Holsinger, a Kentucky cardiologist interested in efforts to fight childhood obesity, as the next surgeon general, the White House announced on Thursday, the AP/Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports (AP/Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 5/24).
In a statement, HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt said that Holsinger has served as secretary of the Kentucky Cabinet Health and Family Services and as chancellor of the University of Kentucky Medical Center.
Holsinger also had a 26-year career with the Department of Veterans Affairs, where he served as undersecretary for health in 1992, Leavitt said. Bush in a statement said that Holsinger served for more than 30 years in the Army Reserve, until he retired as a major general in 1993 (CQ HealthBeat, 5/24).
Bush said, "As America's chief health educator, he will be charged with providing the best scientific information available on how Americans can make smart choices that improve their health and reduce their risk of illness and injury." He added that Holsinger "will particularly focus his efforts on educating parents and children about childhood obesity, a serious epidemic that decreases quality of life and burdens our health care system."
Leavitt said, "With our nation facing many important public health issues, such as childhood obesity, his experience and expertise is a great addition to the HHS leadership team." The term of the previous surgeon general, Richard Carmona, expired last summer (AP/Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 5/24).