Is there a doctor in the house? Oh, plenty!

Female lead: Ellen Pompeo is Meredith Grey in the long-running medical drama Grey's Anatomy. Photo supplied

Female lead: Ellen Pompeo is Meredith Grey in the long-running medical drama Grey's Anatomy. Photo supplied

Ensemble medical shows have been a breeding ground for stars of the future. St Elsewhere (1982-1988) had a slew of stars whose doctoring led to bigger and better salaries in movies, including Denzel Washington as Dr Chandler, Howie Mandel as Dr Fiscus, and Mark Harmon as Dr Caldwell.

Chicago Hope (1994-200)gave us Thomas Gibson, Peter Berg and again, Mark Harmon.

The daddy of them all General Hospital has been on the small screen for more than 55 years, thereby giving us too many stars to name - including Ricky Martin, Demi Moore, Mark Hamill, our own Rick Springfield, John Stamos. And it is still churning them out in the USA.

The unconventional M*A*S*H (1972-1983) brought us Alan Alda, Wayne Rogers, Loretta Swit and Jamie Farr who can all still be seen in the Korean War dramedy on Fox Classics.

Of the more recent ensemble medical dramas Nine NOW offer up Chicago Med's first three seasons in catch-up, but we are way behind the US which is up to season five.

Down Under we also await the latest series of ratings favourite The Good Doctor on Seven, with Freddie Highmore and an excellent ensemble cast including Richard Schiff, Hill Harper, Christina Chang, Will Yun Lee and Antonia Thomas.

Seven has another of the medico magic formula shows in The Resident which is also set to return this year. Hot shot resident Conrad Hawkins (Matt Czuchry), who is in love with nurse practitioner Nic Nevin (Emily VanCamp), pushes the envelope when it comes to risky procedures and hospital policy.

CEO Randolph Bell (Bruce Greenwood) has had somewhat shady dealings in the past, but it looks as though he might be mending his ways moving forward. Let's hope we can look forward to seeing season three of this smart show soon.

New Amsterdam (Nine) is one of the newest hospital-based dramas with the slightly different tack of having a main character suffering from cancer right from the start.

Dr. Max Goodwin (Ryan Eggold known from The Blacklist as Tom Keen) is the new medical director at New Amsterdam Medical Center. His wife Georgia is pregnant with their first child but their marriage is on shaky ground.

He has promised her he will spend less time at work but it is patently obvious that is not going to happen. He pledges to reform the neglected hospital by tearing down its bureaucracy and giving exceptional care to patients.

His first order of business is to fire the entire cardio-thoracic surgical department. Naturally he butts heads with the upper administrators.

Having put off treatment of his cancer he finally agrees to chemotherapy in episode 15 the adage that doctors make the worst patients is proven as Max finds it uncomfortable when his fellow chemo patients make jokes about cancer.

Eggold is supported by an excellent ensemble including Tyler Labine, Anupam Kher, and Freema Agyeman.

Grey's Anatomy first aired in 2005 starring Patrick Dempsey as Dr Derek "McDreamy" Shepherd, Sandra Oh, Katherine Heigl, Justin Chambers and Ellen Pompeo as the namesake Dr Meredith Grey.

The show is one of the few medical dramas with a female lead. In fact it remains predominantly female with Chandra Wilson as chief of surgery Miranda Bailey; Kim Raver as Teddy Altman, who takes over as chief of trauma surgery in season 16, Kelly McCreary as chief of cardiothoracic surgery Maggie Pierce, Caterina Scorsone as Amelia Shepherd chief of neurosurgery and Camilla Luddington as Jo Karev.

It is also arguably one of the few dramas that successfully survived the departure several main characters - Dr Derek Shepherd played by Patrick Dempsey; former cardio-thoracic surgical fellow Dr Cristina Yang (Sandra Oh); Dr Arizona Robbins (Jessica Capshaw) former chief of paediatric surgery; former chief of plastic surgery Dr Mark Sloane (Eric Dane); former chief of orthopedic surgery Dr Calliope Torres (Sarah Ramirez); attending trauma surgeon Dr April Kepner (Sarah Drew); general surgical resident Dr George O'Malley (T.R. Knight) and general surgical resident Lexie Grey (Chyler Leigh).

The show has had its share of groundbreaking moments addressing social issues of the day. It dealt with a lesbian relationship leading to marriage between Torres and Robbins and the consequences of a plane crash which led to the amputation of Robbins' leg. Obviously with so many females as department heads it addresses sexism. Early on in the series it addressed Alzheimer's with Meredith's mother Ellis suffering from it and later with Dr Webber's wife Adele.

In various episodes it has touched on the subject of undocumented immigrant patients' eligibility for healthcare. There have also been intersex and transgender patients and there is an ongoing battle for Dr Bailey with her OCD.

Substance abuse on the part of Dr Amelia Shepherd almost costs her her life and ex-military doctor Owen Hunt (Kevin McKidd) deals with post traumatic stress disorder. Police brutality and profile bias is addressed when a young black man is shot while entering his own house via a window because he forgot his keys.

Domestic violence is another hot button issue dealt with by the Karevs when it is revealed Jo changed her name and moved states to escape her abusive first husband.

Hopefully the high standard of writing, directing and acting will continue with the 16th season which will air in the US this year.

For those who need to reacquaint themselves with the show there are repeats on Stan.

The Seven Network has not yet revealed when season 15 will be shown on our screens.