Berwick stresses health care in race for governor

BOSTON (AP) — Newton pediatrician Don Berwick hopes his background in health care policy will help separate him from the field seeking the Democratic nomination for governor.

Berwick served 17 months in 2010-2011 as head of the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, where he played a leading role in the early implementation of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul. But Senate Republicans blocked his permanent confirmation to the post.

The 67-year-old Berwick also served for more than two decades as president of the Cambridge-based Institute for HealthCare Improvement, and was a professor of both pediatrics and health care policy at Harvard. He’s making his first run for elected office.

Berwick is the only of five Democratic candidates calling for the outright repeal of the state’s casino gambling law.

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