Big Pharma Executive, Alex Azar, Nominated to Be Head of HHS
President Donald Trump has nominated Alex Azar to be the new Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS). This nomination is to fill the vacancy left by Tom Price after it was revealed that he had misused public funds to pay for airline tickets. It was thought that former secretary Price may have used millions of taxpayers dollars to pay for his own personal travel expenses. Price resigned a couple of months ago.
The nomination of Alex Azar is considered quite controversial in some circles because Azar was the former Director of US Operations for the Eli Lilly, one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world. His nomination to head the cabinet department that is in charge of this country’s health care system, and other related services, begs the question of conflict of interest. In fact, it doesn’t just “begs the question of conflict of interest” it smacks of conflict of interest. Since Alex Azar is to be head of Cabinet department that will be directly dealing with pharmaceutical manufacturers (a.k.a. big Pharma), can be fair in his decisions when dealing with big Pharma?
In my way of thinking, his nomination should be opposed based mostly on a potential conflict of interest. There was no way that I would ever trust a former executive from big Pharma as a person who could remain objective. I almost interpreted this as big Pharma hedging its bets against probable health care reform and restructuring; something this country sorely needs. His former association with the Eli Lilly, a company that has financially benefited from US tax breaks and subsidies over the years, should automatically drop Alex Azar from consideration.
The nomination of Alex Azar is being vehemently opposed by Senator Bernie Sanders, a person who has been an enemy of big Pharma for years. The opposition of Senator Sanders pretty much seals the deal for me, because I fully trust Bernie Sanders in his judgment. This is particularly true when it comes to dealing with big Pharma. I do not trust big Pharma, nor will I ever. They have ripped off people in this country for far too many years for anyone to trust them about anything.
In a statement from Senator Sanders, he says,”During Mr. Azar’s tenure at Eli Lilly, this multi-billion-dollar corporation dodged taxes while charging Americans outrageously high prices for life-saving prescription drugs. We need an HHS secretary who is willing to take on the greed of the pharmaceutical industry and lower prescription drug prices, not one who has financially benefited from this greed.”
Since I agree 100% with Senator Bernie Sanders, especially the part about the greed of big Pharma, I think everyone who considers themselves to be a healthcare advocate should oppose this nomination. As far as I’m concerned, it’s just another plot by big Pharma to put one of its own in power.