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New care minister joins DH in reshuffle

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David Cameron has appointed two new health ministers in his government reshuffle, following the reappointment of Jeremy Hunt as health secretary.  

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Alistair Burt is the new minister of state for the Department of Health, while Ben Gummer has been appointed parliamentary under secretary of state.

Burt Alistair

Alistair Burt is the new minister of state for the DH

Mr Burt, who steps into the position occupied by Norman Lamb in the last government, is the MP for North East Bedfordshire.

He was a minister in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office between 2010 and 2013, and before the 2010 election was an opposition whip and member of the Conservatives’ shadow team for the Department Communities and Local Government.

In 1992 he was made parliamentary under secretary of state for the Department of Social Security, and was promoted to minister of state three years later.

He first entered Parliament in 1982 for Bury North, but lost his seat in the 1997 Labour landslide. Before going into politics he worked as a solicitor.

Writing on his website in March, Mr Burt said he was “totally reliant on the NHS, as neither I nor my family have private health insurance”.

On the role of the private sector in the NHS, he said: “The very small element of private sector involvement in the NHS will continue under any future government.”

Gummer Ben

Ben Gummer has been appointed parliamentary under secretary of state

“The NHS has always involved a mixture [of public and private provision]. I will continue to support the best healthcare being provided for constituents, whoever provides it.”

Mr Gummer is the MP for Ipswich and in the last government served as parliamentary private secretary to education secretary Nicky Morgan.

Before entering Parliament he helped run the family owned environmental consultancy business, and he has also written a book about the Black Death.

Mr Gummer ran on a platform to keep services at Ipswich Hospital, and his website claims credit for having “successfully brought heart and other specialist services” to the hospital.

His father is the former Conservative environment secretary John Gummer.

Mr Hunt was reappointed as health secretary on Monday.

Dan Poulter has stood down as a health minister.

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