New prime minister, same health secretary: what now for nurses and the NHS?

Theresa May's appointment as prime minister and a cabinet reshuffle could mean a fresh look at nursing issues
New cabinet

Will a new Conservative government mean change for nurses, the NHS and the people who use it?

Picture: Pete Ellis

The appointment of Theresa May as prime minister and her unexpected decision to keep health secretary Jeremy Hunt during her cabinet reshuffle sends out conflicting signals.

At the Department of Health (DH), there have been a number of junior minister changes, with Philip Dunne moved from the Ministry of Defence to minister of state for health, the second ranked position behind Mr Hunt.

Nicola Blackwood and David Mowat were named parliamentary under secretaries of state.

The RCN has said the changes in government are a chance for a ‘fresh look’ at key issues for nurses.

So what are the key issues facing the new government?

Student bursaries

Last November, the then chancellor George Osborne announced that NHS bursaries for nursing students in


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