Student support services available through SWS

03 October 2022 | Professor Elelwani Ramugondo

Dear students

Across the country, we have had to adapt in one way or another due to the impact of loadshedding. The University of Cape Town (UCT) leadership has put in place measures in response to the constant power cuts, and will continue working on more interventions to mitigate as much as possible the impact on campus activities. As we work to collectively respond to the challenges presented by loadshedding, we encourage students to think through their own adaptation and plan around this to minimise the impact.

Like the many other areas of operation or services at UCT, Student Wellness Services (SWS) has not been an exception and has also felt the impact of loadshedding.

However, we are pleased to share that even during loadshedding, students can still be able to proceed with their face-to-face SWS appointments.

We also alert students that, given the inevitable impact of loadshedding on student life in many ways, the SWS remains available to offer the required support in this time.

Please take note of the information below in relation to SWS services during loadshedding.

How to make a counselling/social work appointment?

Suppose you have made a booking online. How would your counselling/social work appointment be impacted when you have loadshedding?

When experiencing loadshedding, you could still have your appointment face-to-face. SWS has counselling offices at the following UCT sites, which operate from Monday to Friday, 08:30–16:30 (unless otherwise specified):

  • Faculty of Commerce: Leslie Commerce Building, Room 504
  • Faculty of Health Sciences: G26 Groote Schuur Hospital (Monday and Thursday, 08:30–15:30; and Friday, 08:30–12:00); as well as Falmouth Building
  • Faculty of Humanities: Hiddingh Campus, No 5 Leslie Commerce Building, Room 6
  • Faculty of Law: All Africa House, Room 3.05
  • Faculty of Science: Maths Building, M308
  • Graduate Business School: Solution Space Library

These counselling service points are located at the buildings specified above but the service is not exclusive to students in these faculties (ie students can book an appointment at and utilise any service point convenient to them).

Additionally, the Sports Centre Clinic provides a walk-in service for counselling and containment, which does not require a pre-booked appointment. It operates from Monday to Friday, 08:30–16:30.

The SWS has 24-hour telephonic counselling services, even during weekends and after hours. This service is available through:

  • UCT SADAG Careline: call 0800 24 25 26 or text 31393
  • Higher Health Counselling: call 0800 36 36 36
  • ER24 UCT collaboration line: call 010 205 3010

Students are reminded to reach out to SWS whenever they require support. In addition, please see some of the FAQs below.

What services offered by the SWS are available to me?

SWS is a comprehensive primary health care facility providing medical, counselling and social work services.

How do I make a medical appointment?

How do I navigate the SWS booking platform?

Book with a counsellor on the faculty tab to find a suitable date and time. The SWS clinic operates during business hours (08:30–16:30). However, should students require an urgent appointment, they should use the 24-hour telephonic counselling services mentioned above for immediate access to a counsellor without waiting for an appointment.

Alternatively, students can report to the Sports Centre Clinic or Steve Biko Building on Upper Campus, where a psychiatric nurse will attend to them on the same day without an appointment. Students may have to wait their turn at the service, depending on others utilising it during their visit.

Who do I contact for psychiatric emergencies?

Who do I contact if I require an ambulance?

Call Campus Protection Services (CPS) on 021 650 2222/3 (24-hour line).

Who do I contact if I have been sexually assaulted?

Contact CPS on 021 650 2222/3 (24-hour line) or the Office for Inclusivity & Change on 021 650 3530 or 072 393 7824.

Students can call and obtain nursing advice on the triage line at 021 650 5620 during business hours (08:30–16:30).

How do I book for collection of repeat medication?

Please note that the online booking option for repeat medication is only available for students with a valid prescription from an SWS clinician.

Other exciting activities to support your well-being at SWS:

Please direct all enquiries to the SWS practice manager at

Kindly be reminded that, as in any challenge that we may encounter due to circumstances external to the university, we are always stronger together. UCT will always endeavour to offer as much support as possible to all our students. We will continue to be as agile as possible while guided by empathy and flexibility in our approach.


Professor Elelwani Ramugondo
Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Transformation, Student Affairs and Social Responsiveness

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