US Health Secretary Tom Price quits over travel expenditure abuse

US Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price has resigned after sparking a scandal by using private and military jets billed to the taxpayer.

Price has cost the US taxpayers more than $US1 million in less than eight months taking trips to Europe, Africa and Asia on military aircraft as well as more than two dozen private flights.

The White House released a statement announcing the resignation of Tom Price and announcing his replacement.

“Secretary of Health and Human Services Thomas Price offered his resignation earlier today and the President accepted,” the statement read.

“The President intends to designate Don J. Wright of Virginia to serve as Acting Secretary, effective at 11:59 p.m. on September 29, 2017.

“Mr. Wright currently serves as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health and Director of the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion.”

In the wake of Price’s travel expense scandal a bipartisan committee has been established by Congress to investigate travel expenses, and travel records from the White House and 24 federal departments and agencies have been requested.

Wright is a former clinician who worked in family and occupational medicine for 17 years in Texas, before joining the Department of Health and Human Services, where he has worked since 2007.

Tom Price is the first from US President Donald Trump’s Cabinet to resign, but joins a long series of people who have left the Trump administration, including Steve Bannon and Sean Spicer in recent months.

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