Trump picks antiObamacare expert to overhaul US healthcare

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Mr Trump is set to name Republican Representative Tom Price, an orthopedic surgeon from Georgia, as his Health and Human Services secretary, and consultant Seema Verma to lead the Centres for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), a powerful agency that oversees government health programmes and insurance standards. 

He is expected to cast Price and Verma as a “dream team” to help him once he takes office on January 20 with his campaign pledge to repeal President Barack Obama”s signature health law, the Affordable Care Act that is better known as Obamacare. 

President-elect Trump has said he will replace Obamacare with a plan to give states more control over the Medicaid health plan for the poor and allow insurers to sell plans nationally. 

Both positions require Senate confirmation and the Trump administration will need to have agreement from the Republican-led US Congress to repeal and replace the health law. 

Mr Price, an early Trump supporter from the U.S. House of Representatives, is currently the chairman of the budget committee.

He has long championed a plan of tax credits, expanded health savings accounts, and lawsuit reforms to replace Obamacare. 

Miss Verma worked with Vice President-Elect Mike Pence, the governor of Indiana, on a compromise to expand Medicaid coverage for the state”s poor with federal funding. 

The Indiana programme requires beneficiaries to make monthly contributions to health savings accounts. 

Congressman Price campaigned with President-elect Trump because he promised to overhaul Obamacare.

However, President-elect Trump”s position on the health insurance program appeared to soften after he met President Obama following the hard-fought November 8 election. 

President-elect Trump said that he would consider keeping provisions in the law that let parents keep adult children up to age 26 on insurance policies and bar insurers from denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions. 

Mr Price, a 62-year-old former orthopaedic surgeon, and Miss Verma are two of about 70 people who Trump has met so far as he looks to shape his White House and Cabinet team. 

President-elect Trump is expected to reveal an additional Cabinet pick today, but is not expected to announce his choices for the three biggest positions – state, defence and treasury – as he continues to consider his options.

After seeing retired general David Petraeus on Monday – a potential candidate for the State Department or the Pentagon – President-elect Trump is expected to meet US Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee today, and later have dinner with Mitt Romney. 

Governor Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee, and Senator Corker are in the running for secretary of state, along with former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani.