We at the Good Thinking Society are firm believers in the value of an evidence-based approach, and in making decisions based on the best available information and taking on board the position of the most qualified experts available. In particular, where matters of health are concerned, we believe it is of fundamental importance that policy decisions are evidence-based, to ensure the best possible outcome for patients.
With this in mind, it is with great interest that we note the potential chairs for the Health Select Committee – the governmental committee appointed to examine and assess the policies of the Department of Health. The two potential candidates for chair are:
- Dr Sarah Wollaston MP – Member of Parliament for Totnes
- David Tredinnick MP – Member of Parliament for Bosworth
The records of both candidates speak for themselves, and we advise people take a moment to research both candidates’ positions on key matters of health (a good resource is Skeptical Voter, who have detailed pages for both Sarah and David).
Given that the Health Select Committee is an important committee capable of doing excellent and valuable work, we believe it ought to be chaired by someone who has a commitment to evidence-based healthcare. As a former GP with an excellent record on sensible health policy, as well as having vocally supported campaigns to warn the public about the dangers of pseudoscientific ‘treatments’ many times in the past, we hope that you will agree that Dr Sarah Wollaston MP is an exceptional candidate for the position, and a very sensible choice.
What you can do
If you agree that Dr Wollaston is an excellent choice for chair of the Health Select Committee, you might be wondering what you can do to help make it happen. The answer is very simple: all standing MPs are able to vote for committee chairs, so you can ask your MP to vote for Dr Wollaston as chair of the committee. You can ask them to at WriteToThem.com. You will need to explain why you feel that your MP should vote for Dr Wollaston – here is our suggestion for the kind of thing you could say:
As you know, the role of chair of the Health Select Committee will be voted upon soon. Given that this is an important committee whose work can be of real benefit to patients, I feel it is very important that the chair has a strong science and healthcare background, as well as an excellent understanding of the important role of evidence in policy making. With this in mind, I urge you to vote for Sarah Wollaston MP for the position, as I feel her record on issues of evidence-based medicine and her previous career as a GP would make her an exceptional chair. Indeed, she has been the chair for the last year and has fulfilled the role admirably.
The vote will be held on June 17th, so be sure to get your emails to your MPs with plenty of time to spare.