Sources are telling The Chronicle that Senator Mitt Romney has been asked by the presumptive President-elect Joe Biden to lead the Department of Health and Human Services. He is currently discussing the nomination with his family and is expected to accept the appointment.
Biden advisors expect that Romney — a former management consultant by training and a former CEO of Bain Capital — will be tasked with making the national healthcare system more affordable without legislation that modifies the Affordable Care Act.
That work is expected to focus on a massive transition to tele-health services, expansion of digital appointment scheduling, expanded access to pharmaceuticals online, and the development of artificial intelligence technologies that will automate patient intake processing, make screening recommendations, and seamlessly sync medical record access between multiple providers serving a single patient.
It’s unclear if Romney will be tasked with creating open market pricing systems for a’la carte medical services, which could advance the work that the Trump administration has done to require providers to make pricing for their services public. That strategy is seen as key to creating a price competitive atmosphere between providers.
According to State law in Utah a Senate vacancy will be filled by gubernatorial appointment from one of three individuals nominated by the Legislature, each of whom must be a member of the political party of the prior officeholder.
Romney has expressed a desire for Governor Gary Herbert to appoint former Rep. Mia Love to fill the vacancy.