National recommits to third medical school

Establishing a third medical school at the University of Waikato is a practical remedy toward easing New Zealand’s shortage of doctors says Taranaki-King Country MP, Barbara Kuriger.

“It should have started five years ago as National planned to do when we were last in office. We could have been realising the benefits a lot earlier.

“Wednesday’s announcement of the third school along with an increase in the numbers of med students at Auckland and Otago by another 50, is a pragmatic approach to solving our huge shortage of doctors and has been warmly welcomed.”

The new school will train 120 new doctors, and the extra increase in med student numbers will result in the extra 220 doctors graduating by 2030 — more than triple the 50 extra places announced by Labour earlier this year.

“The status quo shows that we are not training enough doctors to meet the demands of our growing and aging population,” she says.

“The new med school will have clinical training alliances with other universities and medical facilities around regional New Zealand.

“It’s a model that will deliver more doctors committed to serving in provincial and rural areas and that’s very welcome news for the people in my electorate.”