Surgeon General Announces Exit

Regina Benjamin to resign next month, may be eying congressional run
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 13, 2013 3:03 AM CDT
Surgeon General Announces Exit
In this Dec. 5, 2012, photo, Regina Benjamin, Surgeon General of the United States, is interviewed after speaking about health disparities in Washington. African-American women have the highest rate of obesity of any group of Americans. Four out of five black women have a body mass index above 25 percent,...   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Four years after her appointment by President Obama, Surgeon General Regina Benjamin is leaving the job next month, she announced last night. "My goal was to create a grassroots movement, to change our health care system from one focused on sickness and disease to a system focused on wellness and prevention. With your help, that movement has begun," she wrote in an email to staff.

She tweeted that she "loved" her job, reports. "I leave next month confident we created a more healthy & fit nation." Health secretary Kathleen Sebelius applauded Benjamin's "passionate" work, CNN reports. Deputy Surgeon General Boris Lushniak will take on the interim post ahead of the selection of a new surgeon general. As for Benjamin's next step, her name has emerged as a possible candidate for Congress in her native Mobile, Ala., in a seat long held by Republicans. (Read more Regina Benjamin stories.)

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