|Emergency Medicine Physician to Join Obama Administration
August 10, 2009
Alexander Garza, MD, MPH, has been confirmed by the U.S. Senate to be assistant secretary for health affairs and chief medical officer for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Until his confirmation, Dr. Garza was a physician in Washington Hospital Center’s Emergency Department and director of Military Programs for the hospital’s ER One Institute.
“Washington Hospital Center and the ER One Institute have provided me with invaluable experiences that I will use as I move into my new position,” said Dr. Garza. "I look forward to joining the Department of Homeland Security and the opportunity to play an important role in health matters that affect our nation.”
As assistant secretary for health affairs and chief medical officer, Dr. Garza will lead all DHS medical and health security matters, oversee the health aspects of contingency planning, and ensure DHS is prepared to respond to chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear hazards.
In addition to his work at the Hospital Center, Dr. Garza previously served as a public health officer and team chief in the U.S. Army Special Operations Command. He was also the associate medical director of Emergency Medical Services for the state of New Mexico and has held academic appointments at several universities including Georgetown University School of Medicine.
Dr. Garza is scheduled to be sworn in later this month.