March 13, 2019
Ned Sharpless, M.D. Named Acting FDA Commissioner
On Tuesday, March 12, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar announced during his congressional hearing that National Cancer Institute Director Dr. Norman “Ned” Sharpless will serve as acting commissioner once Dr. Scott Gottlieb departs.
Dr. Sharpless is an oncology physician and was appointed to head the National Cancer Institute in June 2017. He made modernizing research, diversifying clinical trials and improving outreach to underserved populations some of his signature issue areas.
Previously, Dr. Sharpless directed the University of North Carolina’s UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, where he focused on how the cell cycle plays a role in cancer development. He also earned both his undergraduate and medical degrees at UNC.
The American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) looks forward to working closely with the acting Commissioner and FDA on several issues, recently focusing on drug shortages and the opioid abuse epidemic.