Health and wellness

03 March 2021
<b>Photo</b> <a href="" target="_blank">Adobe Stock</a>.
Photo Adobe Stock.

UCT works hard to create a safe and nurturing environment for all our students. We offer you a wide range of support services with the understanding that your wellness goes beyond physical health. Our services include health counselling, mental health services and support for students with disabilities. The COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns have affected how we offer support to students, so read on to find out more.

Student Wellness Service

The Student Wellness Service (SWS) provides health and counselling services to students at a primary healthcare level. The service is there to help you make healthy lifestyle choices in relation to nutrition, alcohol, safer sex, relationships, and stress management, among others – all in support of academic success.

The SWS offers:

  • Medical assistance: Make an appointment to see a doctor or nurse at the SWS. Medication is available at cost price; the service offers support for chronic conditions like asthma, diabetes and tuberculosis; and they help with minor surgical procedures.
  • Mental health support: SWS provides mental health support and can make referrals for specialised support and care. They also offer support for relationship issues. And remember that the UCT Student Careline is available 24/7 on 0800 24 25 26 (free from a Telkom line) or you can SMS 31393 for a callback. They offer counselling, advice, referral facilities and general support if you are facing any mental health challenges or emotional distress.
  • Sexual health assistance: HIV testing and counselling, medication for sexually transmitted infections, and basic contraceptives are provided free of charge.
Photo University of Cape Town.

Due to the national lockdown, the SWS primarily offers virtual consultations, giving you easy access to a clinical nurse practitioner, psychologist, social worker, counsellors and peer educators via their online platform.

In-person consultations will be arranged if required and must be scheduled to ensure that the number of students accessing the SWS reception area meets prescribed regulations.

Book a consultation.

Read more about the SWS approach to COVID-19 in the COVID-19 Students Support Plan.


The UCT COVID-19 hotline (021 650 1271) is available to respond to all you queries relating to the pandemic, and the SWS triage advice line (021 650 5620) is also available for queries and referrals.

Ivan Toms Building, 28 Rhodes Ave, Mowbray

021 650 1017/20

Disability Service

UCT’s Disability Service, which is situated in the Office for Inclusivity & Change, works towards removing all physical, policy, information and attitudinal barriers that might prevent disabled students and staff from fulfilling their potential. Whether this means improving building access, arranging for extra time during exams or employing sign-language interpreters, the Disability Service is there to help.

Photo Pexels.

The Disability Service’s work includes:

  • disability advocacy and sensitisation
  • improving access to inaccessible venues and allocating disabled parking according to UCT Traffic policy
  • providing accessible transport between residences and lectures
  • specific mobility orientation for staff and students with disabilities
  • providing accessible residence accommodation
  • providing lecture and study materials in an accessible format for persons with sensory impairments
  • student support, psychological education and assessment for mental health concerns and specific learning disorders
  • facilitating extra-time applications and/or other accommodations around exams
  • supporting the development of academics to ensure accessible education.


Level 4, John Day Building, Upper Campus (access via lift or stairs)

021 650 2427


While UCT has an array of services to help you navigate life at the institution, you don’t always know who to contact when you’re in need, particularly in moments of distress.

The UCT Central Advising and Referral System (UCT_CARES) is a central point of contact for the information and services you need.

Send your queries to and a CARES agent will either respond with the relevant, general information or they will refer you to the relevant department.

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