Welcome to the University of Cape Town News
Student health and wellness
27 January 2023
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.
Student Wellness Service
The Student Wellness Service (SWS) provides medical and counselling services to students at a primary healthcare level. The service is there to help you make healthy lifestyle choices about nutrition, alcohol, safe sex, relationships, and stress management, among others – all in support of academic success.
The SWS offers:
Medical service: Make an appointment on the UCT App or SWS website for an online or face-to-face consultation with a clinical nurse practitioner or medical practitioner at the SWS. The service offers support for acute and chronic conditions like asthma, diabetes and tuberculosis and helps with minor surgical procedures.
Pharmacy service: This service option is available only to students who have a valid prescription from an SWS clinician. Essential medication is sold at a cost price. Students can book for the collection of repeat medication online.
Mental health support: Counselling services are available via an appointment for a virtual or face-to-face consultation with a psychologist, social worker or registered counsellor. There is the Ivan Toms clinic as well as satellite offices around campus. Students need to confirm the consultation venue with the therapist after making a booking on the UCT App or SWS website. SWS provides mental health support and can make referrals for specialised support and care.
The UCT Student Careline is a telephonic service available 24/7 on 0800 24 25 26 (free from a Telkom line) or you can SMS 31393 for a call-back. They offer counselling, advice, referral facilities and general support if you are facing any mental health challenges or emotional distress.
Download the Panda App for online mental health and well-being support in the palm of your hand. Access free, anonymous and virtual group support sessions in the Panda Forest as well as various other mental health resources through the Panda app.
Step 1: Search for “Join Panda” in the IOS, Android or Huawei app store.
Step 2: Download the app and create an anonymous user profile.
Step 3: Use the promo code “SWSCares” to unlock free one-to-one text-based chat support sessions.
Sexual health support: HIV testing and counselling, medication for sexually transmitted infections, and basic contraceptives are provided free of charge.
SWS gives you easy access to a clinical nurse practitioner, psychologist, social worker, counsellors and peer educators via their online platform.
Students can call and obtain nursing advice on the triage line on 021 650 5620 from 08:30 to 16:30.
In a medical emergency, call the Campus Protection Services Risk Operation Centre at 021 650 2222 to dispatch the UCT Medical Emergency Response Team.
Ivan Toms Building
28 Rhodes Avenue
Mowbray 021 650 1017/20
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 support you.
The Disability Service’s work includes:
disability advocacy and sensitisation
improving access to 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.