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GPs lead campaign to unseat health bill MPs

Nearly 250 doctors including scores of GPs have launched a campaign to unseat Liberal Democrat and Conservative MPs at the next election as revenge for backing the health bill.

The collective of GPs, consultants and other doctors signed a letter to The Independent on Sunday labelling the bill an ‘embarrassment to democracy' and have vowed to put forward around 50 doctors to stand as candidates against MPs who supported it.

It is likely that senior Lib Dems and those in marginal seats will be targeted, with vulnerable Conservative MPs, including the embattled health secretary Andrew Lansley, also targeted. 

Dr Clive Peedell, co-chair of the NHS consultants' Association, and member of BMA Council, who has co-ordinated the move, said the strategy needed ‘careful planning', but said doctors would use social media to help their cause.  

He wrote on Twitter: ‘If [the] coalition thinks passing [the] health bill will silence critics and reduce bad headlines about their NHS reforms, they are wrong.'

Dr Louise Irvine, a GP in Lewisham, South East London, was one of a number of GPs to back the campaign.

Speaking on Channel 4 news, Dr Irvine said: ‘I think we could make this an issue to alert the public as to what's really going on. The public haven't been told what's at stake, they've been lied to infact. If they knew what was really happening, they would not support any MPs that voted for this legislation.'