Nine doctors are elected as MPs

Authors: Abi Rimmer 

Publication date:  09 Jun 2017

Nine doctors have been elected as MPs in the UK general election, with six representing the Conservative Party, two representing Labour, and one representing the Scottish Nationalist Party.

The election ended in a hung parliament after the Conservative Party won 318 seats, eight short of the 326 seats required for an outright victory.

The Labour Party won 261 seats, the Scottish Nationalist Party 35, the Liberal Democrats 12, and, in Northern Ireland, the Democratic Unionist Party won 10. Overall, 13 seats were won by other parties, including seven by Sinn Fein, four by Plaid Cymru, and one by the Green Party. At the time of writing, one seat remained undeclared.

The BBC reported that Theresa May would visit Buckingham Palace today to seek permission to form a UK government despite losing her Commons majority.[1]

Of at least 39 doctors who stood for election, nine were successful.[2] Six were Conservative candidates, including Sarah Wollaston, GP and the MP for Totnes, who chaired the Health Select Committee under the previous government.

Dan Poulter, former Conservative health minister and a hospital doctor, was re-elected as MP for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich. Liam Fox, a former GP, was challenged for his seat in North Somerset by Greg Chambers, a junior doctor and Labour candidate, but Fox retained his seat by taking 54% of votes.

Other successful Conservative candidates included Andrew Murrison, a former Royal Navy medical officer, who remains as MP for South West Wiltshire; Phillip Lee, MP for Bracknell; and Caroline Johnson, consultant paediatrician and the MP for Sleaford and North Hykeham.

Two doctors standing as Labour candidates were successfully elected: GP and first time MP Paul Williams; and an emergency medicine doctor, Rosena Allin-Khan, who retained her seat in Tooting.

In Scotland, Philippa Whitford, a consultant breast cancer surgeon, was re-elected as the Scottish National Party MP for Central Ayrshire.

Louise Irvine, GP and National Health Action Party candidate, did not manage to unseat Jeremy Hunt, England’s health secretary under the previous government, coming second with 20% of the votes in South West Surrey.


  1. Theresa May to seek to form UK government. BBC News 9 Jun 2017. [Link] .
  2. Rimmer A. “The NHS is on its knees, someone needs to stand up”—why doctors are running for parliament. BMJ Careers 26 May 2017. [Link] .

Abi Rimmer BMJ Careers

Cite this as BMJ Careers ; doi: