Training more doctors

National will train more doctors so that Kiwis don’t have to wait as long to see their GP, be treated at hospital or have their surgery.

The health sector is experiencing a workforce crisis. Sick and injured New Zealanders are waiting hours in emergency departments, weeks to see a GP and months on surgical wait lists.

New Zealand does not train enough doctors to meet the demands of our growing and aging population. To address this, National will establish a third medical school at the University of Waikato, with satellite training centres in regional areas. 

Based at Waikato, the new medical school will have clinical training alliances with other universities and medical facilities around regional New Zealand – a model that will deliver more doctors committed to serving in provincial and rural parts of the country.

National will also increase the number of medical school placements at Auckland and Otago by a total of 50 from 2025. This will be in addition to the 50 extra places already funded at Budget 2023.

Together, this will see an additional 220 extra doctors graduating a year by 2030, compared to just 50 more as currently planned.

Training more doctors will take time, which means in the short term we will have to continue to rely heavily on immigration.

But a responsible Government also plans for the future, and that is exactly what a National government will do.

Read more about our plan to train more doctors here.