Andrew Lansley MP, shadow secretary of state for health

After three years as shadow health secretary, the self-confessed policy lover’s influence has increased significantly.

Although most managers would struggle to recite the differences between the health policies of Labour and the Conservatives, they now feel the need to pay attention. With the Tories in the ascendancy, people are reading their policy documents and discussing at board meetings the impact a change of government would have.

As Mr Lansley is in the unusual position of having been guaranteed to keep his job and become health secretary if David Cameron becomes prime minister, those in the health world do not need telling that now is the time to lobby him.

After years on the scene and more NHS visits than most, Mr Lansley has the experience and contacts book to be on first name terms with many of those who try.

While some in his party might fear he is a bit left wing for their taste, Mr Cameron’s reliance on him is clear: the would-be prime minister does not dare give a speech on health without Mr Lansley by his side.