Recent COVID-19 developments and other updates

08 April 2020 | Campus Announcement

Dear colleagues

This campus announcement aims to inform the UCT community about recent Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) updates and other developments on campus.

1. Updates on UCT COVID-19 cases

UCT is pleased to report that the first student to test positive for COVID-19 at the university has now fully recovered. The student left self-isolation late last week.

Since the last update issued on 1 April, UCT has recorded one positive case of COVID-19. The staff member is currently receiving treatment. The process of contact tracing got underway immediately and all persons identified will remain in quarantine for 14 days.

UCT has now had seven cases of COVID-19 – four staff members and three students. This includes the two cases referred to above.

Updates on COVID-19 cases in the UCT community are now issued weekly.


2. Support for staff health and wellness

UCT is a close community, but one that is currently working and living under very unsual conditions as a result of COVID-19. UCT Human Resources offers many forms of support, including the coordination of services provided by the Independent Counselling and Advisory Services and the South African Depression and Anxiety Group.


3. Research and postgraduate work during lockdown

Challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic provide great uncertainty and anxiety for many researchers who are unable to proceed with aspects of their projects for the moment and have time-limited funding. Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Sue Harrison has provided updates on what UCT is doing to support the research project and tips on how to continue your work


4. No on-campus flu vaccines in 2020

Please note that Discovery Health and Kaelo will not be booking employer events this year to do the flu vaccines as they have been asked to channel these to high-risk members and will be doing them at point of service. Please visit the Discovery website to view high-risk criteria. Members who do not meet the criteria can still have a flu vaccination with the cost paid from their medical savings account should there be funds, or privately.

Although the onsite UCT clinic is closed during the lockdown, Kaelo (primary healthcare services provider for staff in pay classes 2 to 6) is providing free flu vaccinations for members with registered chronic conditions until 30 June 2020 (subject to availability and as per policy). They will also be covering the cost of the pathology test (up to a maximum of R1 400) for confirmed positive COVID-19 cases.

To access these services, Kaelo members can phone their Kaelo primary healthcare network doctors.


5. Tips on how to create a comfortable home workspace

Suzanne Key, occupational health nurse practitioner at UCT’s Safety, Health and Environmental unit in Properties and Services shares a few tips on how to set up your workspace at home and on staying healthy during lockdown. These include practical workstations to avoid discomfort, the importance of a routine and regular exercise, and how to curb unhealthy snacking.


6. Council nominations 2020-2024

Members of the UCT Convocation and donors are invited to nominate persons for election as members of the university Council for the 2020-2024 term. The current Council’s term of office will end on 30 June 2020. Nominations must be received no later than 23 April 2020.

 

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UCT’s response to COVID-19

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.

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.

Frequently asked questions

 

Daily updates


Friday, 16 October 10:05, 16 October 2020
Wednesday, 14 October 12:50, 14 October 2020
Tuesday, 22 September 14:10, 22 September 2020
Friday, 11 September 10:05, 11 September 2020
Monday, 31 August 12:20, 31 August 2020
Wednesday, 12 August 10:20, 12 August 2020
Friday, 7 August 11:24, 7 August 2020
Thursday, 6 August 18:26, 6 August 2020
Monday, 27 July 14:00, 27 July 2020
Wednesday, 15 July 09:30, 15 July 2020
Monday, 13 July 14:25, 13 July 2020
Monday, 6 July 16:20, 6 July 2020
Thursday, 25 June 10:15, 25 June 2020
Tuesday, 23 June 12:30, 23 June 2020
Thursday, 18 June 17:35, 18 June 2020
Wednesday, 17 June 10:45, 17 June 2020
Tuesday, 2 June 12:20, 2 June 2020
Friday, 29 May 09:25, 29 May 2020
Monday, 25 May 14:00, 25 May 2020
Thursday, 21 May 12:00, 21 May 2020
Wednesday, 6 May 10:00, 6 May 2020
Tuesday, 5 May 17:05, 5 May 2020
Thursday, 30 April 17:10, 30 April 2020
Tuesday, 28 April 10:30, 28 April 2020
Friday, 24 April 09:35, 24 April 2020
Thursday, 23 April 17:00, 23 April 2020
Wednesday, 22 April 14:25, 22 April 2020
Monday, 20 April 17:45, 20 April 2020
Friday, 17 April 12:30, 17 April 2020
Thursday, 16 April 09:45, 16 April 2020
Tuesday, 14 April 11:30, 14 April 2020
Thursday, 9 April 09:00, 9 April 2020
Wednesday, 8 April 15:40, 8 April 2020
Wednesday, 1 April 15:50, 1 April 2020
Friday, 27 March 11:40, 27 March 2020
Thursday, 26 March 18:30, 26 March 2020
Tuesday, 24 March 15:40, 24 March 2020
Monday, 23 March 15:40, 23 March 2020
Friday, 20 March 16:00, 20 March 2020
Thursday, 19 March 09:15, 19 March 2020
Wednesday, 18 March 16:00, 18 March 2020
Tuesday, 17 March 12:50, 17 March 2020
Monday, 16 March 17:15, 16 March 2020

Campus communications


Online staff assembly and other updates 15:09, 30 September 2020
Fee adjustments and other updates 15:21, 16 September 2020
Call for proposals: TLC2020 10:15, 26 August 2020
SAULM survey and other updates 15:30, 5 August 2020
COVID-19 cases and other updates 15:26, 5 August 2020
New UCT Council and other updates 15:12, 15 July 2020
Upcoming UCT virtual events 09:30, 15 July 2020
Pre-paid data for UCT students 14:25, 22 April 2020
Update for postgraduate students 12:55, 20 April 2020

Resources

Video messages from the Department of Medicine

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.

Useful information from UCT

External resources


News and opinions


Statements and media releases


Media releases



Read more  

Statements from Government



 
 

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.

 

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