This site is intended for health professionals only

At the heart of general practice since 1960

Jeremy Hunt reappointed as health secretary

Prime Minister Theresa May has reappointed Jeremy Hunt as health secretary in her new minority Government following last week's general election.

Mr Hunt, already the longest-serving health secretary, was reelected as MP for South West Surrey after receiving 56% of the public vote in his constituency.

He had been challenged by NHS Action Party candidate and GP, Dr Louise Irvine, who came second with 20% of the vote.

Ms May appointed her cabinet yesterday, after announcing on Friday she would form a minority Government shored up by Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).

But Mr Hunt will be forced to appoint a new team of health ministers after two out of three lost their MP seats in the election, including primary care minister David Mowat and public health minister Nicola Blackwood.

And the announcement of Mr Hunt's reappointment was not universally popular with GPs, who took to Twitter to express their concern.

Doncaster LMC medical secretary Dr Dean Eggitt said that Mr Hunt's NHS austerity policies were harming patient care.

And Dr Zoe Norris, a GP in Hull and the chair of the BMA’s sessional GP committee, said simply:

Mr Hunt, who replaced Andrew Lansley as health secretary five years ago, has been the person in charge of overseeing the rollout of Mr Lansley's largely unpopular Health and Social Care Act 2012 reforms, including the formation of NHS England and competitive tenders for all healthcare contracts.

He also faced the wrath of the health profession for imposing the new junior doctor contract last year.

He has yet to react to his latest reappointment, having said last summer following the post-Brexit referendum reshuffle that he was ‘thrilled to be back in the best job in government’.

GPC chair Dr Chaand Nagpaul, who will become chair of the BMA at the end of this month, told Pulse: 'The overriding issue for the NHS is government austerity policy and its denial of the pressures in the NHS and growing health care needs.

'Until we address this fundamental issue and have change of the austerity policy, from the top, then whoever the health secretary is is a secondary issue.'

Dr Nagpaul added that until the issue of a 'bankrupt NHS budget' was addressed, ensuring general practice receives the required funding will be 'impossible'.

Readers' comments (33)

  • Vinci Ho

    I 'love' Agent Hunt
    Life of politics is so so boring if you do not have a well targeted foe. All ideologies pointed to that whether it is capitalism, Marxism, Leninism etc Donald Trump will be targeting North Korea soon as his domestic troubles rose in temperature further and further.
    A well known but weakened foe is far better than a new but unpredictable one.......

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Sorry to all my colleagues to have to put up with him.
    I am off next month at 56 can't take any more!

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Longest serving and most hated.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • What an incompetent politician Theresa May is to have no grasp this guy is a disastrous health secretary

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Teresa Mays descision making in going for an election when no need and continuing with the hated and failed hunt doesnt augur well for our brexit negotiations.1300 nurses from Eu registered july 2016 41 in march this year.Europe seems to have got the message.We seem to be living in La La Land.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • I am very sad that Mr Hunt has been reappointed as Health Secretary. I am told that 23% of doctors are leaving the NHS post registration jobs (emigrating or doing something else). I am afraid Mr Hunt is living in cloud cuckoo land if he thinks he has a good command of the NHS. It costs circa £500,000 for the doctors to reach this stage and the Antipodes, who recruit most of these, must be laughing their heads off. I thought the NHS was short of money. So sad that this investment is going to waste in this country.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • I find that when I have had a terribly hard day I can forget my woes by running through a field of wheat- provided of course that the farmer doesn't see me. It has a positively intoxicating effect, and I have started to misuse this by relying on it more and more as a stress-buster.I do find however that its not wise to make serious life-changing decisions when in the almost post-coital glow of this exertion. Its a pity I don't have access to Mrs Mays ear so that I could share my experiences with her as I suspect she'd been for a run before re-appointing Jezza.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • -------------------------------

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Let's look at what is probably our future:

    Capitalism has all been about increasing productivity. This applied mostly to the manufacturing industry through out sourcing to third world countries where wages are substantially lower. Following the success and transformation of 'everything' due to the internet, the next thing that was out sourced was the service industry (eg call centres). Now we are about to see the development of robots and 3d printing manufacturing products locally with no distribution or labour costs. This will take jobs, even from third world countries. The decreased need for distribution and the development of self-driving electric vehicles (see Elon Musk https://youtu.be/hpDHwfXbpfg) will destroy huge numbers of jobs. Google's DeepMind is analysing all actions carried out by Doctors. It is envisaged that eventually DeepMind will have extremely sophisticated algorithms that mimic Doctors' actions. Operations are increasingly being done by robots - Google da Vinci prostate surgery. These robots can be controlled through the internet by a person just trained to do this from anywhere in the world.

    So eventually no knowledge or training will be required by those that manage to get one of the few jobs left. These jobs will be about reassuring people, until robots become human like understanding language, showing compassion and giving support. There is a lot of research going into this as well, particularly in Japan.

    This is the future that JH, who could already be in the pay of the elite, is looking forward to.

    By then the elite will own everything led by Goldman Sachs type banks and Multinational companies. The only problem is that people will not have jobs or enough equity / fiat money / cryptocurrency / gold to pay for the products. So who will keep adding more money to the 1% that currently already own 95% of everything?

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • 3.25
    Already gone and so relieved.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

View results 10 results per page20 results per page50 results per page

Have your say