Marilyn Tavenner, principal deputy administrator at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, was nominated by President Obama to replace Don Berwick as CMS chief. Tavenner was appointed to her post in February 2010 and previously served as HHS secretary for the state of Virginia. Tavenner also held senior positions at Hospital Corporation of America.
ANCOR members might recall that Dr. Berwick was a "recess appointee" back in July 2010, and the Senate never held a confirmation vote as Berwick was not expected to be approved. Forty-two Republican senators vowed in a letter earlier this year to block the confirmation of the former Harvard professor. Berwick's recess appointment was to expire at the end of the year.
Should Senate Republicans resist confirming Tavenner, which is likely, she can serve as acting administrator--as have several predecessors in both Democratic and Republican administrations. Berwick is to step down on December 2.