David was elected to the Australian Parliament on 7 September 2013, representing The Nationals – which he joined in 2008. David stood for the Federal seat of Lyne in 2010 and although unsuccessful, recorded a 12% swing at that election against the incumbent Member and won 15 polling booths. David stood successfully in 2013 to win the seat with nearly 65% of the vote.
David and his wife Charlotte married in 1990 and have three children: Isabelle, Oliver and Alice. David and Charlotte have raised their family on their farm in the Hastings Valley, on which they run grass-fed Angus beef for the export market.
David graduated MB BS from University of Sydney in 1981 and Fellow of Royal Australasian College of Physicians (FRACP)in 1991. As an undergraduate, he gained experience training both in Papua New Guinea and British Columbia. David’s post graduate specialist training included stints at hospitals at Bathurst, Orange and Dubbo while based at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital (RPAH) in Sydney (1981-1982 and 1987-1990). David also gained two years of paediatric experience at Royal Alexandra Hospital for Children (RAHC) Camperdown (1983-84), St George Hospital (1991) and at Sydney’s St Vincent’s Hospital (1992). David obtained a Diploma of Anaesthetics (London) and Diploma of Child Health (UK) in 1986 after working in the UK NHS (1985-6).
Before entering Federal Parliament, David had 33 years of medical practice, including 21 years as specialist Gastroenterologist and Consultant Specialist Physician in Port Macquarie (1993 -2013). David was active in Postgraduate Medical Training as Director of Physician training at Port Macquarie Base Hospital (1995 – 2009) and was instrumental in the Base Hospital achieving accreditation by Royal Australasian College of Physicians for Specialist Training and becoming a Centre for College Examinations.
David and Charlotte built, licensed and ran the free standing Hastings Day Surgery in Port Macquarie for 12 years. During this period, David also lectured and tutored at UNSW Rural Medical School since its inception.
David uses his first-hand experience in public and privately managed health delivery and small business to ensure Australia’s health system delivers high quality cost-effective care in an affordable and fiscally sustainable manner.
David wants to see Australian business, particularly small business, released from unnecessary government red-tape and green-tape at federal, state and local levels of government. David understands the complexity and pressures of primary production in Australia and works to ensure primary producers and processors receive equitable treatment by retailers under Australia’s consumer and competition laws.
Since entering Parliament, David has served as Assistant Minister for Health and Assistant Minister for Rural Health. In December 2017, he was appointed as Assistant Minister for Children and Families.