AHRQ Director Gopal Khanna steps down to protest US Capitol attack

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Gopal Khanna was the 5th Director of AHRQ. (Image: YouTube)

AHRQ Deputy Director and Chief Physician Dr David Meyers will serve as acting AHRQ director.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Director Gopal Khanna announced his resignation on Monday to protest the US Capitol attack last Wednesday by pro-Trump rioters. Khanna submitted his resignation to Health and Human Service (HSS) Secretary Alex Azar through an email to staff. 

Khanna is one of several Trump administration officials who resigned in the wake of last week’s attack, which is widely acknowledged as an insurrection that Trump himself fueled.

Khanna said: “As a first-generation American and a proud citizen of this country, nothing is more sacred than the values embedded in our Constitution, and the principles we hold dear. However, based on the horrific events last Wednesday at the nation’s Capitol, the very seat of our democracy and a beacon of freedom the world over, I have decided to step aside.”

In the email to staff, Khanna also said that he is an eternal optimist who believes that the best days as an agency and a nation are still ahead. He also said: “I will remain AHRQ’s biggest cheerleader, and will take advantage of every opportunity to sing your praises. I’ll never stop working for you.”

AHRQ Deputy Director and Chief Physician Dr David Meyers will serve as acting AHRQ director.

Gopal Khanna was appointed as the fifth Director of AHRQ on May 9, 2017. His last day at the office was on Monday. Previously, Khanna served as Minnesota’s first Chief Information Officer (CIO) by Governor Tim Pawlenty. He also served as a member of the Health Information Technology Policy & Standards Committees’ Enrollment Workgroup, chaired by former US President Obama’s Chief Technology Officer at the White House.

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