New York [U.S.]: President Donald Trump’s nominee for administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Seema Verma was approved by the Senate in a 55-43 vote.
Verma is now second Indian-American to be in charge of a plum administration post, after Nikki Haley- the US Ambassador to the United Nations.
Verma’s confirmation comes as congressional Republicans escalate their efforts to repeal and replace Obamacare, reports CNN, however, adding that the health care bill currently making its way through the House currently plans to eliminate Medicaid expansion after 2020.
Verma, who is an ally of Vice President Mike Pence, has been working on health care policy for more than a decade and developed an alternative Medicaid plan in Indiana.
When Obamacare became law, Verma helped Pence, who was then Indiana governor at the time, tweak the plan and sell it to the Obama administration.
It then became a program which by touted by Pence as a conservative alternative to Obamacare’s main vehicle for expanded coverage.
The White House had earlier announced its eagerness in Verma’s appointment, asserting that her credentials proved her qualification for the job.
“She’s unquestionably and uniquely qualified for her position, and especially now that health reform is at the top of the President’s agenda, it’s time to get her in place. She’s worked with governors’ offices, state Medicaid agencies, state health departments, state departments of insurance, as well as private companies and foundations” White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said.
However, top Democratic senators had vociferously opposed her nomination stating that she does not have the experience. (ANI)