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Dr. Gupta May Go To Washington

February 2009
Dr. Gupta May Go To Washington

In an interview with Khabar a while ago, Dr. Sanjay Gupta shared his thoughts on a role that’s close to his heart: promoting good health. “I don’t know if I’d necessarily be in electoral politics,” he said, “ but I’ve grown convinced that I’d like to be involved in the public discourse on issues that I’m passionate about, specifically healthcare. We’ll see what happens. At some point there may be a position where I’d be able to make a significant contribution.”

Looks like Dr. Gupta has his chance now. Unless there is an unexpected change, he will become the next U.S. Surgeon General. There has been some opposition to his nomination, but President Obama’s choice seems to have broad support. Why was Sanjay Gupta tapped for the job? Well, apart from his qualifications, he already has high visibility. Dr. Gupta has been a CNN medical correspondent since 2001, and he has covered 9/11, the anthrax scare, SARS, the Iraq war, the 2004 Asian tsunami, the 2005 Kashmir earthquake, Hurricane Katrina and conflicts in the Middle East. His honors include an Emmy for the coverage in New Orleans. He has hosted “House Call with Dr. Sanjay Gupta” and launched “Fit Nation” and “New You Resolution,” among other programs. Also a columnist (for Time magazine) and an author, he discusses aging and longevity in Chasing Life, his debut book published in 2007.

Newsweek has a novel explanation for why Obama came calling on Sanjay Gupta. “He’s handsome, he performs brain surgeries while covering the war in Iraq—and he can call Lou Dobbs on his cell phone and tell him to shut up,” the magazine notes.

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