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More of the same from the Department of Health?

BMJ 2016; 354 doi: (Published 19 July 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;354:i3972
  1. Gareth Iacobucci, news reporter, The BMJ
  1. giacobucci{at}

Gareth Iacobucci gets the profession’s reaction to Jeremy Hunt’s reappointment as health secretary

“‘Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated...’ Thrilled to be back in the best job in government.”1

After a frantic morning at 10 Downing Street last week, during which some media were forced to hastily withdraw the news that he had been removed from his post, Jeremy Hunt cheerfully channelled Mark Twain to confirm that Britain’s new prime minister, Theresa May, had decided that he would remain in the role he has held since September 2012.

Did May admire the tough stance Hunt had adopted during the junior doctors’ dispute (possibly, given her handling of the Police Federation while serving as home secretary)? Was he being asked to clean up his own mess with regards to the junior doctors’ contract? Or was he simply the safest pair of hands?

May’s reasons remain hidden for now, but Hunt insisted he had asked to stay on.2 The retention of their bête noire provoked immediate chagrin among junior …

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