Health Care Centre

The HCC is the building on the left, near the top of Rhodes Avenue, the steep road that goes up the hill past Hobson House and CPU. The nursing staff in the HCC are on duty throughout the term to provide a professional and caring service to students at Rhodes University. Five qualified nursing sisters who provide the services below run the health care centre. Students are welcome to discuss their problems and these discussions are confidential.

For students on medical aid, all emergencies will be referred to Settlers hospital via ER24 or Gardmed ambulance and the hospital staff will organise that the doctor meets the patient there. If no private Dr after hours, the hospital doctor will see the emergency. Appointments can also be made for the students to see the doctor at the surgery.

The student is responsible for the medical practitioner’s charges and for the cost of prescribed medicines from local pharmacies. A doctor is available to see students every weekday and the charge is approximately half a normal consultation fee from the private sector per visit from the student account.

An appointment will be secured with the doctor via the Health Care Centre staff or Counselling Centre. Admissions at the HCC is free for ALL students, not only residence students but also for oppidans.

There are ten beds for in patients suffering from infectious diseases or ailments such as flu, tonsillitis, and gastroenteritis for those recovering after surgical procedures. It is also a haven for those suffering from stress, anxiety, and depression. This in-patient facility is available free to students in residence and at a nominal fee to oppidans.


Opening Hours

In term time: please make an appointment by calling (046) 603 8523 or email: healthcarecentre@ru.ac.za

Monday - Friday: 

8:00 - 13:00 

14:00 - 17:00

Saturday, Sunday and Public holidays:

8:00 - 13:00 

During university vacations: Monday - Friday:

8:00 - 12:30


Medical Emergencies After Hours

For any medical emergencies after hours (from 16H30–08H00) daily and on the weekends), please contact the RU ER24 emergency number 010 205 3068 . If the problem is not an emergency, then rather come go the Centre during office hours .

Free Services

  • Treatment of minor ailments such as flu, tonsillitis etc. 
  • In-patient care for acute illnesses.
  • Management and care of patients with infectious diseases. 
  • Post-operative observations
  • Emergency assessment and crisis management (e.g. rape)
  • Voluntary HIV testing, including pre- and post-test counselling
  • HIV AIDS medication 
  • Screening tests e.g. blood pressure
  • Family planning advice

Services at a minimal cost 

  • Vaccinations (flu, etc.) 
  • Pregnancy Tests
  • Pap Smears and blood tests 
  • Doctors clinic: At around R240.00 per consultation, the fees rise annually
  • Vitamins and appropriate medication for HIV&AIDS patients

Referral Services 

Staff at the Health Care Centre can make referrals to a range of other medical services in town, including private doctors and dentists, the Counselling Centre, the Psychology Clinic, the hospital, social workers and private counsellors. 

Students who have undergone surgery recently or who are under private medical care, which requires follow up treatment by the Health Care Centre sisters, should provide a letter of consent from their doctors.  

Admissions at the HCC

 1) Infectious diseases such as:

a. tuberculosis, except for multidrug-resistant TB and extremely drug-resistant TB the length of stay is (14) days. We admit students who are in residence only, those in digs normally remain there, unless their digs-mates have not had exposure or the infectious illness before

b. chickenpox, rubella, mumps or any infectious diseases such as meningitis will be treat- ed at a hospital level, the length of stay is five (5) days .

2) Acute illnesses such as dysmenorrhea, abdominal pain and headache the length of stay necessary is 1-2 days . We may admit acute illnesses where we are concerned for the health of the student and we wish to monitor the progress of the illness . This is at the discretion of the HCC staff . If necessary, the student may be referred to Settlers Hospital.

3) Post-operative care: the length of stay is about five days . Post-operative care may include wound care and pain management where the patient is stable and admission is at the discretion of the HCC staff.

Contact:  (046) 603 8523 or healthcarecentre@ru.ac.za 


Counselling Centre

The Counselling Centre is situated on the top floor of the Bantu Steven Biko Building (off Prince Alfred Street).

Professional, registered psychologists and interns are available to discuss a variety of issues related to student’s mental health and wellbeing.

The centre is open daily from 8-5 and has an afterhours psychological emergency line.

The Counselling Centre specialises in:

  • Confidential individual counselling
  • Relationship counselling
  • Group therapy for students with similar interests and goals
  • An after-hour line for psychological emergencies: 010 205 3068 . During office hours, students experiencing a psychological emergency will be assisted immediately by the psychologist on call
  • Study skills workshops on issues pertinent to students such as time management, stress management and exam preparation
  • Self-help material and information pamphlets covering various topics
  • Provision of referral information . If we are unable to help you, we can tell you about other services that may also be able to help.
Contact:  (046) 603 7070 or counsellingcentre@ru.ac.za

Career Centre

The Career Centre is on the first floor of the Steve Biko building (next to the Rhodes swimming pool) and is open Monday to Friday between 08h00 and 16h30.

The Centre offers students personal career counselling and provides the following services:

  • Walk-in services - no appointment is necessary if you have a quick query that can be answered in five minutes .
  • Individual appointments - to discuss and explore study and career options . Ranges from 30 to 50 minutes and can be booked through the administrative assistant at the Counselling Centre .
  • Career Assessments: also booked through the admin assistant
  • Various Workshops throughout the year to support and encourage future career success
  • CV writing and Interview Preparation workshops
  • Career Publications: To inform and guide students in their career development while at Rhodes University and upon graduation .
Contact:  (046) 603 7070 or careercentre@ru.ac.za 

HIV Office

Free, strictly confidential HIV counselling and testing is offered by a partnership between the Counselling Centre and the Health Care Centre.  the voluntary HIV testing is done along with the necessary pre- and post-test counselling, by appointment, at the Health Care Centre every afternoon. 

The entire procedure, including the counselling and the test is relatively brief, usually somewhere within 30 minutes.  Rapid HIV tests are employed and studetns will be provided with their test result immediately.  Students can be assured that the testing and counselling procedure follows strict protocols and that the service provided is confidential, professional and efficient.  Students can obtain their HIV medication from the HCC.  

The Counselling Centre is available to provide psychological support, while the HCC provides medical support and advice for any student who is HIV positive.  It is University Policy that the rights of HIV-positive students are protected. 

Contact: (046) 603 8523 or healthcarecentre@ru.ac.za 


Protocol for Pregnant Students

Protocol for students on use of illicit drugs

Protocol for Suicide & attempted suicide

 Sexual Offences policy for students

Last Modified: Mon, 28 Feb 2022 10:04:41 SAST