APA Urges Senate HELP Committee to Advance Nominations of Elinore McCance-Katz, M.D., as Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use and Jerome Adams, M.D., as Surgeon General

ARLINGTON, Va. — Today the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) will hold a confirmation hearing for five nominees, including Elinore McCance-Katz, M.D., Ph.D., and Jerome Adams, M.D., M.P.H. The American Psychiatric Association has endorsed both nominees, and urges the Senate to move forward with their confirmations.

McCance-Katz was nominated for the role of Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use, a new position created by the bipartisan 21st Century Cures Act. She is currently the chief medical officer for the Rhode Island Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities, and Hospitals. McCance-Katz, a member of the APA, is also a professor of psychiatry and human behavior and professor of behavioral and social sciences at the Alpert Medical School at Brown University.

APA President-Elect Altha J. Stewart, M.D., said: “Dr. McCance-Katz has a wealth of experience working on mental health and substance use disorders in both academic settings and the public sector. I am confident that, as an APA member psychiatrist, she will be able to help our nation’s government tackle pressing issues in mental health. The APA strongly supports her nomination.”

Adams is the nominee for Surgeon General. The APA Board of Trustees recently voted unanimously to endorse Adams, who has served as the Indiana state health commissioner since 2014. Adams holds a master’s degree in public health from the University of California at Berkeley and a medical degree from the Indiana University School of Medicine. An anesthesiologist, Adams also serves as an associate professor of clinical anesthesia at the Indiana University School of Medicine. As state health commissioner, Adams addressed the opioid crisis by expanding access to the overdose intervention medication naloxone.

“Dr. Adams’ background in public health and his experience combatting opioid abuse in Indiana will serve him well as the United States’ Surgeon General,” APA CEO and Medical Director Saul Levin, M.D., M.P.A., said. “APA strongly supports his nomination and urges the Senate to act quickly to confirm Dr. Adams. We are confident he will be a strong leader on public health issues, including the opioid epidemic.”

The American Psychiatric Association is the oldest medical association in the country founded in 1844. The APA is also the largest psychiatric association in the world with more than 37,000 physician members specializing in the diagnosis, treatment, prevention and research of mental illnesses. APA’s vision is to ensure access to quality psychiatric diagnosis and treatment. For more information please visit www.psychiatry.org.

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