A healthy dose of politics

IT WASN’T exactly a lightbulb moment that convinced Dr Andrew Southcott to shelve a promising hospital career to join politics. Perhaps less dramatic, the junior hospital doctor had always had what he calls “the political bug”, and when the chance came to go from helping individuals to helping the country, he took it.

“Why someone would change career, especially a professional career, is always complex,” says Dr Southcott, now shadow parliamentary secretary for primary healthcare.

“I had been active in politics at university and ultimately I felt that while I enjoyed my clinical work very much, I did want to see wider changes in the system and be able to influence changes to the system. I wouldn’t say that I was driven by a strong sense of injustice or anything like that, but I did feel that I was quite interested in having a say. I really enjoyed working at the coalface but I felt that the way to really influence