On June 12, U.S. Surgeon General Regina Benjamin, M.D., M.B.A., a family practitioner, announced her intention to step down next month after four years of service. Surgeon General Benjamin’s tenure was marked by her advocacy for health care that focused on preventative medicine and wellness. Prior to her term as Surgeon General, Dr. Benjamin founded and served as the CEO of the Bayou La Batre Rural Health Clinic located in Bayou La Batre, Alabama.
The Surgeon General is often referred to as “America’s Doctor” for his or her duty in “providing Americans the best scientific information available on how to improve their health and reduce the risk of illness and injury.” The post carries a four year term and is part of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health and it is appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate.
Deputy Surgeon General RADM Boris D. Lushniak, M.D., M.P.H., a dermatologist, will serve as Interim Surgeon General until a new Surgeon General is nominated by the President.