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Senator Hassan Statement on Confirmation of HHS Secretary Alex Azar

WASHINGTON – Senator Maggie Hassan issued the following statement following her vote against the confirmation of Alex Azar to be Secretary of Health and Human Services:

“Communities across New Hampshire and the entire country continue to grapple with the devastating opioid epidemic, but the Trump Administration has failed to lead, including by not calling for additional federal resources. I was disappointed that Mr. Azar would not commit to advocating for new funding during his confirmation hearing. Considering his tenure as a top executive at a major pharmaceutical company, I also continue to have serious doubts that Mr. Azar can be a leader in addressing the skyrocketing cost of prescription drugs. The Department of Health and Human Services needs a secretary who will focus on the health and well-being of hard-working Granite Staters, not someone who will continue the Trump Administration’s efforts to undermine our health care system, and unfortunately, Mr. Azar has not proven that he can be that leader.”

During Mr. Azar’s Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee hearing, Senator Hassan pressed the nominee (click here for video) on the need for additional funding to combat the opioid crisis and raised concerns about his commitment to lowering skyrocketing prescription drug prices given his close ties to pharmaceutical companies.