Dr. Michael Nash, a major and internist at Hill Air Force Base, has accepted a two-year appointment as one of two doctors on call to travel with Vice President Dan Quayle.
Nash said he is pleased with the opportunity to watch over the health of the man who is a heartbeat away from the nation's highest office, but he downplayed the achievement of getting the job."It's more or less just a routine Air Force assignment," he said. "It's not like I was handpicked by Vice President Quayle."
Indeed, Nash, out of the University of Minnesota's medical school eight years, has yet to meet Quayle.
"I'm going into it cold, basically," he said Wednesday.
Nash said he was asked in January if he was interested in being nominated to the post of physician to the vice president. "Why they called me, I'm not sure," he said.
After an interview with White House staff physicians in March, Nash was given the job. He is to be in Washington by mid-June.
Nash will work with three other doctors in a White House clinic, administering to Quayle and what he has been told will be a small number of other people entitled to clinic care.
Every other week, Nash will be on call to travel with the vice president. Nash said he also might occasionally travel with President Bush.
The doctor, who previously worked in Japan, said he looks forward to globe-trotting.
"I think it's a unique opportunity," Nash said.
When not meeting Quayle's needs, Nash said he might do research in the hospital at nearby Andrews Air Force Base.