Dan Poulter

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Dan Poulter

Daniel-Poul ter-960x640.jpg
Parliamentary Undersecretary of State for Health Services
In office
4 September 2012 – 12 May 2015
Prime MinisterDavid Cameron
Preceded bySimon Burns
Succeeded byBen Gummer
Member of Parliament
for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich
Assumed office
6 May 2010
Preceded byMichael Lord
Majority20,144 (37.2%)
Personal details
Daniel Leonard James Poulter

(1978-10-30) 30 October 1978 (age 40)[1]
Beckenham, Kent, England[2]
Political partyConservative
Alma materUniversity of Bristol
King's College London

Daniel Leonard James Poulter[2][3] (born 30 October 1978) is a British Conservative Party politician, who was elected at the 2010 general election as the Member of Parliament (MP) for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich. Poulter is a Physician and served as a Parliamentary Under Secretary of State in the Department of Health between September 2012 and May 2015 when he returned to the backbenches.[1][4]

Early life and career[edit]

Poulter was born in Beckenham in Kent.[2] He was privately educated at Vinehall School and Battle Abbey School before attending the University of Bristol, graduating with a Law degree, before qualifying as a medical doctor at King's College London (MBBS; AKC).[2]

Poulter worked as a junior doctor training in obstetrics and gynaecological medicine and has published articles in the area of women's health.[2] During the 2011 parliamentary summer recesses, Poulter worked at the James Paget Hospital in Gorleston, in the Accident and Emergency department.[5] At the time of meeting David Cameron in 2006, who inspired him to enter politics, he was working in Mental Health.[6]

Poulter was elected as a Conservative member of Hastings Borough Council in 2006, serving until 2007.[2] He was the deputy leader of Reigate and Banstead Council between 2008 and 2010.

Parliamentary career[edit]

Poulter was elected as the Member of Parliament for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich at the 2010 general election, receiving 27,125 votes, increasing the Conservative majority of his predecessor, Michael Lord, and gaining a vote share of 50.8*%.[7]

In 2011, he was credited with a "lifesaving" intervention in Parliament when he persuaded fellow Conservative MP Guy Opperman to seek urgent medical treatment.[8] Opperman subsequently had a brain tumour removed.

Poulter announced he would resign from the British Medical Association in 2012, following an announced doctors' strike.[9] He said he did not believe "striking as a doctor could ever be justified" and defended plans for doctors' pensions.

In September 2012, Poulter became the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Health.[1][4] His primary responsibilities as a Health Minister were for workforce issues, NHS estates and IT systems.[10] After the 2015 general election, Poulter returned to the back benches, and returned to working part-time as a doctor.[11]

In October 2015, Poulter expressed his support for protests by doctors and others against the Conservative government's proposed changes to the junior doctors contract.[12][13] In April 2016, Poulter widened his criticism of the Conservative Government, in a Guardian article.[14] In January 2016, he announced his support for medicinal cannabis saying it should "be used and encouraged".

Poulter was opposed to Brexit prior to the 2016 EU membership referendum.[15]

Sunday Times libel case[edit]

In 2010 fellow Conservative MP Andrew Bridgen raised concerns to the Conservative whips office about the behaviour of Poulter with women MPs.[16] The Sunday Times published these allegations, that Poulter had put his hand up the skirts of at least three female MPs, during the MeToo scandal in late 2017, and in November 2017 Bridgen reported Poulter to the Conservative Party's newly established disciplinary committee.[17] No female MP had made any complaint about Poulter, and he was subsequently cleared of inappropriate behaviour claims in March 2018.[18][19]

Poulter took legal action for libel against the Sunday Times, whose defence was that it was simply reporting accusations made by others against Poulter. However, the High Court ruled that the stories implied guilt of sexual assault, causing the Sunday Times to admit that the claims were false and it should not have published them, and paying substantial libel damages to Poulter.[16]


  1. ^ a b c "Daniel Poulter MP". BBC Democracy Live. Retrieved 25 July 2010.
  2. ^ a b c d e f "POULTER, Dr Daniel Leonard James". Who's Who. A & C Black and Oxford University Press. November 2012. Retrieved 27 December 2012. Login or subscription required.
  3. ^ "No. 59418". The London Gazette. 13 May 2010. p. 8745.
  4. ^ a b Daniel Poulter Archived 2 January 2013 at the Wayback Machine, parliament.uk. Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  5. ^ "East MPs opt for fresh challenges in their summer break". BBC News Online. 8 August 2011. Retrieved 20 September 2012.
  6. ^ Quinn, Ben (14 April 2016). "PM has broken pledges to help disadvantaged, says Tory ex-minister". The Guardian. Retrieved 27 March 2017.
  7. ^ "2010 General Election result". BBC News Online. 7 May 2010. Retrieved 20 September 2012.
  8. ^ McGurran, Deborah (17 May 2011). "Dr Dan Poulter MP: Doctor in the House". BBC. Retrieved 29 March 2015.
  9. ^ Poulter, Daniel (31 May 2012). "Striking as a doctor can never be justified – I am resigning from the BMA". Guardian. Retrieved 29 March 2015.
  10. ^ "Health ministers' portfolios revealed by DH". GPonline.com. Retrieved 20 September 2012.
  11. ^ "Poulter out and Gummer in as Tories reshuffle health ministers". nursingtimes.net. 13 May 2015. Retrieved 5 October 2012.
  12. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 12 March 2016. Retrieved 17 October 2015.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  13. ^ Elgot, Jessica (17 October 2015). "Jeremy Hunt: I would protest if I were a 'misled' junior doctor". The Guardian.
  14. ^ Quinn, Ben (14 April 2016). "PM has broken pledges to help disadvantaged, says Tory ex-minister". The Guardian.
  15. ^ Goodenough, Tom (16 February 2016). "Which Tory MPs back Brexit, who doesn't and who is still on the fence?". The Spectator. Retrieved 11 October 2016.
  16. ^ a b Waterson, Jim (25 February 2019). "MP Dan Poulter wins damages over Sunday Times assault claims". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 February 2019.
  17. ^ Wheeler, Caroline (5 November 2017). "Daniel Poulter, Tory former minister, accused of putting hand up MPs' skirts". The Sunday Times. Retrieved 5 November 2017. (subscription required)
  18. ^ "Suffolk MP cleared over inappropriate behaviour claims". ITV News. Retrieved 25 March 2018.
  19. ^ "Suffolk MP Daniel Poulter cleared in misconduct probe". BBC News. Retrieved 25 March 2018.

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Michael Lord
Central Suffolk and North Ipswich