With a significant number of Māori medical students due to graduate in 5 years it is important they get collegial support, chair of the Medical Council says.
Andrew Connolly said this year, for the first time, the number of Māori students entering medical school is proportionate to the Māori population.
He said besides becoming a doctor, many of them would have other cultural leadership responsibilities and would need support.
"There is a need to make sure that as a profession in all the various branches of medicine that we all support those young doctors as they come through," Mr Connolly said.
"Because, I think we understand the added cultural responsibilities many Māori and indeed Pacific doctors carry back in their home communities because of the mana which is associated with becoming a doctor."
Mr Connolly said that the challenge was to ensure that the proportionality would in turn continue throughout all layers of health organisations.