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Oracle Promotes Seema Verma to Lead its Health Division Cerner Inc

Written by : Aishwarya Sarthe

February 2, 2024

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The elevation of Verma's role comes as Oracle works to streamline the integration process amid slower-than-projected revenue growth.

In a strategic move, Oracle Corp has promoted Seema Verma, a former head of Medicare in the Trump administration, to head its acquired health records unit. 

Verma, currently serving as an executive vice president at Oracle, will oversee the integration of Cerner Inc, a company Oracle acquired for about $29 billion nearly two years ago.

The elevation of Verma to lead Oracle Health was disclosed in an internal memo in December, according to sources familiar with the matter. The promotion of Verma's role comes as Oracle works to streamline the integration process amid slower-than-projected revenue growth.

Oracle's management has been addressing the challenges faced by its ownership of Cerner, emphasizing a shift towards cloud subscriptions. The company aims to restructure contracts with numerous customers to adapt to the evolving business landscape. Job cuts within the unit have also been implemented, with CEO Safra Catz emphasizing the pursuit of profitability aligning with "Oracle standards."

Despite repeated attempts, Oracle has not provided comments on Verma's extended responsibilities.

Public Sector Impact

Cerner's significance lies in its major contracts within the public sector, notably the $10 billion deal with the Department of Veterans Affairs to modernise the medical records system. This contract, among the largest in federal government IT, has drawn considerable attention and scrutiny.

Verma, known for her role as a critic of the Affordable Care Act during her tenure as the administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services in the Trump administration, has been instrumental in advancing pro-market policies. Her contribution to the White House Covid Task Force was highlighted by Oracle Executive Vice President Mike Sicilia in an April 2023 memo, crediting her for fostering widespread adoption of telehealth and free vaccines.

Oracle's Political Ties & Regional Focus

Oracle's top executives have historically aligned themselves with Republican politicians, with notable contributions from chairman Larry Ellison and CEO Safra Catz to Republican figures. The recent return of Oracle's CloudWorld Tour to the UAE reflects the company's commitment to supporting the country's digital economy.

Nick Redshaw, senior vice president – of Technology Cloud, Middle East, and Africa, emphasised Oracle's aim to help the UAE achieve its goal of doubling the contribution of the digital economy to non-oil GDP within the next decade. Oracle's investment in local infrastructure, including cloud regions in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, aligns with its strategy to accelerate support for the UAE's digital initiatives.

In addition to regional commitments, Oracle has forged strategic partnerships to strengthen its position in the market. Collaborations with du, one of the UAE's largest telecom operators, and SmarTone Telecommunications Holdings Limited aim to unlock value and transform business support systems, respectively.


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