It is standard procedure for US Government officials [VIDEO] to use commercial flights for work-related travel. Other options are available for those dealing with national security matters. tom price, however, had expensive taste. As Health Secretary, he made 26 private flights costing $400,000, since May. The BBC says Mr. Price spent a lot more if the figure from the political news website Politico is correct. It claims the former Health Secretary’s overall travel costs amounted to more than $1 million.

Too little, too late

Price has insisted that his flights were all approved by the government’s legal and ethics offices.

On Thursday, Sept. 28, he apologized for the scandal and promised to “write a personal check to the US Treasury” to cover a fraction of his travel on private charter planes. Sources close to President Donald Trump, however, told CNN that he was infuriated at Price’s actions, which he deemed “stupid.” Speaking to reporters, Trump said “I didn't like it, cosmetically or otherwise. I was disappointed.”

The reason for Price’s departure is ironic, given that he was a frequent critic of government spending as a Republican congressman. In April, he told CNN that he wanted “to cut redundancy and waste in his agency.” Before the private plane scandal, Price was already getting the thumbs down from Trump. That resulted from the Republicans' failed efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare.

Others in the line of fire

In the wake of Price’s resignation, White House officials are considering whether or not to reform Cabinet secretaries' travel plans. More transparency and stricter procedure were suggested. Despite his misdemeanor, however, Price is not the only Government official to flout the rules. Both the Head of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Treasury Secretary have also come under fire for not taking cheaper commercial flights for work-related travel.

Taxpayers also forked out more than $12,000 when Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke used a private jet for work in June and March. He also used a military aircraft to get to Norway in mid- 2017. President Trump has had a difficult time keeping key members of staff. CNN notes that since he assumed duties at the White House, he has either fired or seen resign “his National Security Adviser, Press Secretary, Communications Director, Chief Strategist, Acting Attorney General and FBI Director.”

New man in charge

The White House confirmed that Don J. Wright was selected as acting Health Secretary. The Independent says the Virginia native currently serves as “the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health, and Director of the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion.” Fox News also revealed that Wright was an alternate US delegate to the World Health Organization Executive Board. Correspondents add that he “worked as a physician and maintained a clinical and consulting practice in Texas” before joining the US Government.