Care minister Alistair Burt has announced he will resign in September.
Burt told MPs in the House of Commons today that he planned to step down from the frontbench when the new Conservative party leader has been announced.
Prime minister David Cameron resigned after the UK voted to leave the European Union.
Burt said his resignation was not related to recent events, including the outcome of the EU referendum and the junior doctors’ vote to reject the new contract proposals.
Burt was appointed minister of state for community and social care in May 2015. He was the first Conservative social care minister since 1997 and succeeded two Liberal Democrat MPs, Paul Burstow and Norman Lamb, each with a longstanding interest in the sector.
One of the most notable decisions made by Burt was the move to shelve the Care Act 2014 funding reforms. A cap on the amount self-funders will have to contribute to their care costs was due to be introduced in April 2016, but will now not come into force until 2020.
He has also overseen a consultation on a new national strategy for carers and the government’s response to the Law Commission’s deprivation of liberty law reforms. This response was highly critical and led to the Law Commission radically scaling back their plans.
Burt was also the care minister at the time of the spending review, but he downplayed his influence in it, telling sector leaders: “The truth is that I will find out what the funding is when you find out, when the chancellor stands up in Westminster to deliver the autumn statement.”
Unlike his predecessors, Burt’s focus has not solely been on social care and mental health. The remit of his ministerial role was widened to include primary care and some of Burt’s most recent announcements have covered GP practice, dentistry and cuts to pharmacy funding.
A spokesperson for the Department of Health said it was “business as usual” until September and no details were available about Burt’s replacement at this stage.