Former VA secretary David Shulkin to join Sanford Health

Sept. 13, 2018

The former Veterans Affairs secretary who departed the Trump administration after an ethics investigation will be joining Sanford Health as an administrator.

David Shulkin will become chief innovation officer and a strategic adviser for the Sioux Falls-based health system.

He will oversee Sanford Research, Imagenetics, Sanford Chip, Profile, and other initiatives, and advise on the health system’s growth plan and public policy efforts.

Shulkin will also join the Sanford International Board and serve as an ambassador for the health system in both “domestic and international projects,” Sanford said in a press release.

Shulkin was previously secretary of the VA, overseeing the nation’s largest integrated healthcare system, until March. He claims he was fired by President Trump. The White House has maintained he resigned.

Shulkin was the target of a scathing February report by the VA’s internal watchdog which found Shulkin improperly accepted Wimbledon tickets, flew his wife to Europe at the VA’s expense and used a VA aide to plan leisure activities. Shulkin disputed the report but agreed to reimburse the VA for the tickets and travel expenses.

Shulkin was the lone holdover in Trump’s cabinet from the President Barack Obama administration. While VA secretary, he told lawmakers he faced political appointees within his department. He later said he was targeted by members of the Trump administration who saw him as a foe to privatization of the VA healthcare system.

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