Indian-American Seema Verma, seen as key to replacing Obamacare -Affordable Care Act, has met top US lawmakers ahead of her confirmation hearing.
Verma of Indianapolis, Indiana, is President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee to become the next administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Sen. Lamar Alexander, Senate Health Committee Chairman said, “I had an excellent meeting this morning with Seema Verma, and I look forward to working together as she leads CMS, an agency with an annual budget of nearly US$1 trillion.”
“She will have an opportunity to change the direction of the agency to be more responsive to state requests for flexibility and innovation as Congress and the president move more healthcare decisions out of Washington and back to the states,” Alexander added.
Mitch McConnell, Senate Majority Leader, also praised Verma for her potential role in replacing Obamacare while speaking on the Senate Floor. Obamacare is the signature healthcare initiative of outgoing US President Barack Obama.
McConnell said immediately after the Senate passed the legislative tools needed to repeal and replace Obamacare, that the repeal legislation will include a stable transition period “as we work toward patient-centered healthcare.”
“There are other steps we can take too, including important administrative steps like confirming Tom Price as secretary of Health and Human Services and Seema Verma as CMS administrator,” McConnell added.
“They can start stabilising the health insurance markets that Obamacare has thrown into turmoil, and they can start bringing relief to the American people,” he added.
“Repealing and replacing Obamacare is a big challenge. It isn’t going to be easy. Nonetheless, we’re committed to fulfilling our promise to the American people and we will,” said the Senate majority leader.
In current capacity, Verma will oversee two of the largest channels of federal spending — Medicare and Medicaid.