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CNN's Sanjay Gupta to become surgeon general?

President-elect Barack Obama is paging Dr. Gupta, reportedly tapping CNN's chief medical correspondent to be his surgeon general.

Obama offered Sanjay Gupta, 39, a practicing neurosurgeon who's reported on public health crises from around the world, the position sometime after a November meeting in Chicago, unidentified sources told the Washington Post.

Gupta didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment this afternoon, but he's expected to take the position, according to the Post.

He was reportedly weighing whether he could afford (or wanted) to give up his lucrative TV and medical gigs and move his family (he has two kids and his wife is pregnant) from Atlanta to Washington, D.C.

Gupta was a correspondent for "Planet in Peril," a series on climate change that CNN produced in collaboration with Scientific American. He is known for injecting himself into stories, conducting brain surgery five times — including on a two-year-old suffering from head wounds — while embedded with troops in Iraq six years ago.

Gupta has a health-policy background, too. As a White House fellow in the 1990s, he wrote speeches for then-First Lady Hilary Clinton. Clinton, now New York's junior senator, is Obama's pick to become secretary of state.

If the job pans out, Gupta could be the first surgeon general deemed one of the sexiest men alive. Gupta earned that illustrious honor in 2003 from People magazine, which declared, "How sexy is he? So sexy that he makes you forget he's reporting on the flu, SARS or pesticide levels in farmed salmon."

Image of Sanjay Gupta © CNN Worldwide – All Rights Reserved 2007

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