Maine's incoming Democratic governor has nominated a former senior White House health policy expert to head the state's embattled health agency.

Gov.-elect Janet Mills said Friday she nominates former Obama administration staffer Jeanne Lambrew as the next commissioner of Maine's Department of Health and Human Services.

Maine lawmakers return in January. The state Senate considers such gubernatorial nominations.

Lambrew will head a department that has received scrutiny for years over its mounting child welfare caseload, its treatment of psychiatric patients and its response to the state's opioid crisis.

Outgoing Gov. Paul LePage has hired welfare fraud investigators, cut the state's Medicaid rolls and blocked the expansion of voter-approved Medicaid expansion.

Mills said Friday that Maine will expand Medicaid "fairly expeditiously."