Practice Management

Senate confirms Murthy as Surgeon General


The U.S. Senate voted mostly along party lines Wednesday to confirm Vice Adm. Vivek H. Murthy, MD, MBA, to serve as the 21st Surgeon General of the United States.

Dr. Vivek H. Murthy

Seven Republicans – Bill Cassidy (La.), Susan Collins (Maine), Roger Marshall (Kan.), Susan Murkowski (Alaska), Rob Portman (Ohio), Mitt Romney (Utah), and Dan Sullivan (Alaska) – joined all the Democrats and independents in the 57-43 vote approving Dr. Murthy’s nomination.

Dr. Murthy, 43, previously served as the 19th Surgeon General, from December 2014 to April 2017, when he was asked to step down by President Donald J. Trump.

Surgeons General serve 4-year terms.

During his first tenure, Dr. Murthy issued the first-ever Surgeon General’s report on the crisis of addiction and issued a call to action to doctors to help battle the opioid crisis.

When Dr. Murthy was nominated by President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. in December, he was acting as cochair of the incoming administration’s COVID-19 transition advisory board.

Early in 2020, before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Dr. Murthy published a timely book: “Together: The Healing Power of Human Connection in a Sometimes Lonely World”.

He earned his bachelor’s degree from Harvard and his MD and MBA degrees from Yale. He completed his internal medicine residency at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, where he also served as a hospitalist, and later joined Harvard Medical School as a faculty member in internal medicine.

He is married to Alice Chen, MD. The couple have two children.

A version of this article first appeared on

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