Vivek Murthy, the first Indian-American appointed by the Obama regime as the Surgeon General, has been dismissed by the Trump administration to bring new leadership to the vital public health sector.
39-year-old Murthy has been replaced by his deputy, Rear Admiral Sylvia Trent-Adams, one of the first nurses to serve as surgeon general.
"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 on Friday.
"(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.
Murthy was confirmed as US Surgeon General in December 2014. It was not immediately clear why Murthy was relieved from duty, the New York Times said while noting that employees at the Department of Health and Human Services privately expressed surprise at his sudden departure.
Murthy, the 19th Surgeon General and the first Indian American to hold this post said in a Facebook Post that it was an honour and privilege to work for this prestigious position.
Interestingly, Murthy is the second Indian-American to be fired by the Trump administration from a senior position. The first one was the US Attorney from New York Preet Bharara who was sacked after he refused to resign.
Murthy was confirmed by the Senate by 51 to 43 votes, despite stiff resistance by the pro-gun lobby led by the National Rifle Association. The Surgeon General is appointed for a four year term.
At 37, he was the youngest ever Surgeon General. Murthy's parents are originally from Karnataka, India. He was born in Huddersfield in England and the family relocated to Miami in Florida when he was three years old.
He received an MD from the Yale School of Medicine and an MBA in Health Care Management from the Yale School of Management. He is currently a practicing physician at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, as well as the Hospitalist Attending Physician and Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School.
(Feature image source: Twitter/Reuters)