The U.S. Senate on Thursday confirmed Dr. Stephen Hahn, chief medical executive at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, as the next commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration.
Hahn, who is a radiation oncologist, had a fairly smooth confirmation process. The White House announced President Donald Trump’s intent to nominate him on Nov. 1 and he was confirmed less than six weeks later on a bipartisan 72-19 vote.
During a committee vote on Hahn’s confirmation, Senate health committee Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-Wash.) said she was skeptical of Hahn’s lack of government experience, but her no vote was solidified when during his confirmation hearing Hahn refused to commit to taking non-tobacco flavored e-cigarettes that have not undergone FDA review off the market. President Donald Trump said he wanted to ban all flavored vapes in early September, but has since backed off the idea.
During his confirmation hearing, Hahn committed to work with lawmakers to combat drug shortages and high prescription drug prices.
The current acting commissioner of the FDA is Dr. Brett Giroir.