This campus announcement aims to inform the UCT community about recent developments on campus.
1. Guidelines on completing the 2020 academic year
In consultation with faculties and student representatives, the UCT executive has decided to finish the 2020 academic year using remote teaching. This decision, which implies a change in the academic calendar, has been approved by Senate and Council.
2. Update on COVID-19 cases
As at 28 July 2020, UCT has a total of 102 reported COVID-19 cases. The number of infected non-health sciences staff members is 77, of which 57 have recovered. The reported number of student cases is 25, which includes eight Faculty of Health Sciences students on clinical platforms. There have sadly been 10 deaths in the UCT community – nine staff members and one student.
3. Student Wellness hosting compulsory weekly webinars
Student Wellness Service (SWS) is hosting compulsory webinars for the limited number of students invited to return to campus. The next sessions are scheduled for 4, 11, 18 and 25 August from 11:00 to 12:00. These webinars include presentations on how COVID-19 spreads, how to properly wear a mask, basic prevention measures, screening avenues available to students, as well as the link between mental health and COVID-19. A Q&A session in each webinar will provide students with a platform to get any of the issues they may have, addressed by panellists. Pre-registration is not required.
4. Support for students
The university is aware that some students may be having challenges coping during this period of uncertainty due to the COVID-19 pandemic. For students who require support, the UCT Student Care Line provides 24-hour telephonic counselling and can be accessed by calling 0800 242 526 (free from a Telkom line) or sending an SMS to 31393 for a call back.
SWS also offers a range of counselling services to students (read the SWS flyer on services that are available to students away from campus) and bookings can be made online, via email or on the UCT mobile app.
For other student health queries, students can book a medical advisory telephonic consultation online for medical advice or phone 021 650 5620. Please note that these calls are not consultations. Students can also book online for a consultation with a clinical nurse practitioner, who will call back at the appointed time.
To find out more about UCT support during COVID-19, visit the Frequently Asked Questions page.
5. Appointment of executive director: research
Dr Linda Mtwisha has been appointed as the new executive director of research at UCT with effect from 1 October 2020. She joins UCT from the University of Johannesburg, where she is the senior director of strategic initiatives and administration.
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COVID-19 is a global pandemic that caused President Cyril Ramaphosa to declare a national disaster in South Africa on 15 March 2020 and to implement a national lockdown from 26 March 2020.
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. Please note that the information on this page is subject to change depending on current lockdown regulations.
UCT’s Institute of Infectious Disease and Molecular Medicine (IDM) collaborated with Global Citizen, speaking to trusted experts to dispel vaccine misinformation.
If you have further questions about the COVID-19 vaccine check out the FAQ produced by the Desmond Tutu Health Foundation (DTHF). The DTHF has developed a dedicated chat function where you can ask your vaccine-related questions on the bottom right hand corner of the website.
The University of Cape Town in partnership with the Western Cape Government (WCG) have reinforced our commitment to bringing hope to the residents of the Mother City with the launch of the world‑class Community of Hope Vaccination Centre that opened its doors on Monday, 30 August 2021.
The site is located on Main Road in Mowbray – in the Forest Hill Residence – and access is from Broad Street. The site is open every Monday to Friday from 08:00 to 15:00 and on Saturday from 09:00 to 13:00. Please allow time for attending to COVID-19 protocols and arrive as early as possible at the vaccination centre.
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.