Washington: Indian-American Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, appointed by the previous Obama regime, has been asked to step down by the Trump administration to put its own leadership in place.
"Today, Murthy, the leader of the US Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, was asked to resign from his duties as Surgeon General after assisting in a smooth transition into the new Trump administration," the US Department of Health and Human Services said in a statement yesterday.
"Murthy has been relieved of his duties as Surgeon General and will continue to serve as a member of the Commissioned Corps," the statement continued.
Murthy, 39, the 19th Surgeon General and the first Indian American to hold this position said in a Facebook Post that it was an honour and privilege to work for this prestigious position.
"For the grandson of a poor farmer from India to be asked by the President to look out for the health of an entire nation was a humbling and uniquely American story. I will always be grateful to our country for welcoming my immigrant family nearly 40 years ago and giving me this opportunity to serve," he said.
Murthy has been replaced by Rear Admiral Sylvia Trent- Adams, who is the current Deputy Surgeon General, according to PTI.
"(Health and Human Services) Secretary (Tom) Price thanks him for his dedicated service to the nation. Rear Admiral Sylvia Trent-Adams, who is the current Deputy Surgeon General, will serve as the acting Surgeon General and assume leadership of the US Public Health Service Commissioned Corps," the official statement said.
Born in England, Murthy moved with his Indian parents to Miami when he was three.
A physician with the Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston and an instructor at Harvard Medical School, he co-founded an advocacy group in 2008 called Doctors for Obama, a national organization of 16,000 doctors and medical students. It later became Doctors for America and promoted the Affordable Care Act nicknamed Obamacare.
Murthy has also founded two other organizations. Visions Worldwide focuses on rural health in India and on HIV/AIDS education in India and the US, while TrialNetworks is a software company focused on making drug development and clinical trials more efficient.