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CLEVELAND -- Toby Cosgrove has decided to remove himself from being considered for the Secretary of VA.

The following statement was released Saturday afternoon:

"I am humbled and honored to have been considered for the opportunity to help Veterans across the United States. This is an enormous responsibility and one that deserved careful thought and consideration. As a physician, veteran, and hospital chief executive, I have great respect for the care provided to the Veteran community and for those who work to care for them. This has been an extraordinarily difficult decision, but I have decided to withdraw from consideration from this position and remain at the Cleveland Clinic, due to the commitment I have made to the organization, our patients and the work that still needs to be done here."

NBC News first reported Cosgrove had been contacted by the Obama Administration in a preliminary conversation about the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The next secretary, chosen by the Obama Administration, will replace Eric Shinseki who resigned amid a scandal involving substandard timely care and false records.

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