Today, during his news conference, President-Elect Donald Trump announced that he has chosen David Shulkin as the head of the VA.
Shulkin has been undersecretary of the VA under President Obama, having been confirmed in 2015. He also serves as Chied Executive of the Veterans Health Administration, which provides almost 9 million veterans with health care per year.
Shulkin is an MD -- he graduated from medical school from the Medical College of Pennsylvania. He has led several teaching hospitals, including Beth Israel in New York (not to be confused with Harvard-associated Beth Israel Deaconess in Boston), the U.Penn hospital, and Temple University Hospital.
Shulkin will be one of the first people picked by Trump for a position who was also picked by President Obama. It is unlikely that he will have any trouble being confirmed, as he has been confirmed before by a previous Senate. Additionally, he is uncontroversial compared to other Trump picks, like Jeff Sessions and Rex Tillerson.
However, Trump has promised radical change at the VA, and it will be hard to argue that he is making radical change when he is choosing the same person chosen by President Obama.
As an physician with an MD, Shuklin did his internship at Yale, and his residency at Pittsburgh Presbytarian. He has won several awards for his work, including being named as one of the "Top 100 Physician Leaders of Hospitals," one of the "50 Most Influential Physician Executives in the Country," and "One Hundred Most Influential People in American Healthcare."
Shulkin has also written one book: Questions Patients Need to Ask: Getting the Best Healthcare