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'Mixed' response to Hunt as new health secretary

4th September 2012

Andrew Lansley's replacement by Jeremy Hunt, the former culture secretary, has been greeted with a "mixed" response according to the BBC.

houses of parliament

While the deputy chairman of the BMA, Dr Kailash Chand, tweeted that the "disaster in the NHS carries on", the BMA's official statement welcomed Mr Hunt's appointment as a "fresh opportunity for doctors and the government to work together".

The Unite union said Mr Hunt needed to "reflect deep and hard on the errors of his predecessor".

Dr Peter Carter of the Royal College of Nursing stated that it wanted to work with the new health secretary to make certain that the "nursing voice was heard". 

Mr Hunt said outside Downing Street that he was "incredibly honoured and looking forward to getting on with the job". 

The BBC's Health Correspondent Branwen Jeffreys said: "He'll face scepticism and battle fatigue. The changes under way in the NHS in England are as yet largely invisible to the patient, but they touch every part of the health service."

She added: "A new NHS Commissioning Board formally begins work next month, and by April large parts of the budget will be managed by GP-led groups. Mr Hunt is swapping into the driving seat part way through the journey, and to some extent will have to keep following the road map set out by his predecessor."

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