The University of Cape Town (UCT) is taking the threat of infection in out community extremely seriously. Please familiarise yourself with the information that follows to ensure your health and safety.
Coronaviruses are usually affect only animals. Those that infect humans cause mild to severe upper respiratory tract illness, including high fever, coughing and difficulty breathing.
COVID-19 has been declared a global pandemic by the World Health Organisation and a national disaster by President Cyril Ramaphosa.
COVID-19 spreads from the upper airways of an infected person when they cough or sneeze. Saliva droplets fall onto nearby surfaces, where the virus can live for a number of days. Most of the risk comes from touching infected surfaces and then touching your nose, mouth or eyes.
Social distancing is the most effective way of slowing the spread of COVID-19.
People over 60 and those living with chronic medical conditions, such as:
Travellers to high-risk areas are particularly vulnerable
National Department of Health WhatsApp service
060 012 3456 (WhatsApp "Hi" for access to relevant information)
National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NCID) hotline
0800 029 999
Student Wellness Service
021 650 5620 (office hours)
021 650 1271 (after hours)
021 650 5685 (staff only)
Independent Counselling and Advisory Services (ICAS)
On-site counselling will be suspended for now, but the all-new ICAS On-the-Go app lets you chat live with an ICAS counsellor, giving you and your family access to 24/7/365 health and wellness info.
Please call me: *134*905#
Telephonic counselling: 080 111 3945
Get ICAS On-the-Go
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Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a global pandemic that caused President Cyril Ramaphosa to declare a national disaster in South Africa on 15 March and implement a national lockdown from 26 March. The intention of these drastic measures is to “flatten the curve” and contain the spread of the coronavirus to enable healthcare workers to more effectively treat those affected. Although South Africa has recently reached a peak of COVID-19 infections, the country is expecting a surge in positive cases in August.
UCT is taking the threat of infection in our university community extremely seriously, and this page will be updated regularly with the latest COVID-19 information.
Getting credible, evidence-based, accessible information and recommendations relating to COVID-19
The Department of Medicine at the University of Cape Town and Groote Schuur Hospital, are producing educational video material for use on digital platforms and in multiple languages. The information contained in these videos is authenticated and endorsed by the team of experts based in the Department of Medicine. Many of the recommendations are based on current best evidence and are aligned to provincial, national and international guidelines. For more information on UCT’s Department of Medicine, please visit the website.
To watch more videos like these, visit the Department of Medicine’s YouTube channel.
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The Covid-19 crisis has reinforced the global consequences of fragmented, inadequate and inequitable healthcare systems and the damage caused by hesitant and poorly communicated responses.24 Jun 2020 - >10 min read Opinion
Our scientists must not practise in isolation, but be encouraged to be creative and increase our knowledge of the needs of developing economies, write Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng, vice-chancellor of UCT, and Professor Thokozani Majozi from the University of the Witwatersrand.09 Jun 2020 - 6 min read Republished
South Africa has been recognised globally for its success in flattening the curve, which came as a result of President Ramaphosa responding quickly to the crisis, writes Prof Alan Hirsch.28 Apr 2020 - 6 min read Republished
In an email to the UCT community, Vice-Chancellor Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng said:
“COVID-19, caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2, is a rapidly changing epidemic. [...] Information [...] will be updated as and when new information becomes available.”
We are continuing to monitor the situation and we will be updating the UCT community regularly – as and when there are further updates. If you are concerned or need more information, students can contact the Student Wellness Service on 021 650 5620 or 021 650 1271 (after hours), while staff can contact 021 650 5685.