Call for Applications – 2019 Intake

South African Field Epidemiology Training Programme:

Call for applicants – 2019 intake

The South African Field Epidemiology Training Programme (SAFETP) is requesting applications for the incoming 2019 class from qualified health professionals with interest in public health and commitment to public service.

SAFETP is hosted by the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) of the National Health Laboratory Services (NHLS), for the National Department of Health. The programme is a combination of didactic and practical training in which the resident is grounded in the academic basics of applied epidemiology and is assigned to field sites where s/he learns by doing while being mentored by supervisors in projects that address critical public health priorities.

This residency programme is two-year, full-time training, from which residents graduate with either a Masters in Public Health (MPH) from the University of Pretoria OR a Masters in Epidemiology (MSc) in Field Epidemiology from the University of the Witwatersrand. The 2019 cohort will begin in January 2019 and end in December 2020 and applicants are required to apply at both the University of Pretoria and the University of the Witwatersrand.

Bursaries/stipends may be available for select South African applicants fulfilling predefined criteria. South African applicants working currently within the South African government at various levels, who plan to take study leave to participate in the programme and afterwards return to their workplace, must have written approval from their departments for the entire two years. NICD staff that have been funded and granted study leave will be required to continue working for the NICD for at least two (2) years after completing the MPH OR MSc programme.

South Africans and permanent residents who are funded by their employers must ensure that this funding covers their salaries/stipends, as well as university registration and tuition fees for the two-year training period.

For applicants applying from other African countries – the eligibility requirements still apply and the international applicant must have the required visa and permissions to study in South Africa.  The applicants must ensure that all the costs related to participation in SAFETP are fully covered for the two years of training – salaries/stipends, university registration and tuition fees, accommodation, travel and accommodation to investigate outbreaks – by their respective governments.

Work experience requirements

  • Professional experience in a health field or other fields relevant to health
  • Experience of working in the public health system is desirable

Minimal Educational requirements (all degrees should be in health, laboratory or public health-related field from an accredited university):

  • A medical, veterinary or dentistry degree; OR
  • A doctorate in a medical/health related field; OR
  • A master’s degree in a medical or health-related field; OR
  • An honour’s/bachelor’s degree with prior research experience

Please note that a B Tech degree does not fulfil the minimum educational requirements of the University of Pretoria, the University of the Witwatersrand and the SAFETP.

Key requirements:

Applicants must:

  • Be registered with their respective professional bodies
  • Be fluent in spoken and written English
  • Be computer literate and proficient in Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook for use in communication, word processing, analysis, presentation and report generation. Knowledge of a statistical package will be an advantage
  • Have a valid driver’s license and be willing to drive a hired car
  • Provide proof of current physical residential address for future purposes of Domicilium citandi et executandi.

How to apply

  1. If you meet all the requirements, download and complete the application and two reference forms that are available here.
  1. Additional forms/documents required are:
    1. Certified copies of qualification certificates
    2. Statement of Purpose: In 700 words or less describe your career goals and your interest in applying for this programme
    3. Curriculum Vitae (CV)
    4. Results of the National Bench Mark Test –please visit the website of National Bench Mark Test via the website: and Tel: +27 (0)21 650 3523 for more information on dates and venues of the test. Please note that this is a University of Pretoria requirement and NOT a University of the Witwatersrand requirement.
    5. Non-South Africans who are accepted must do the Test of English as Foreign Language (TOEFL) and have their original degrees accredited by the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA).
    6. Proof of the online application from the University of Pretoria AND the University of the Witwatersrand as follows:

University of Pretoria: follow the process for applying online.

University of the Witwatersrand:  Evidence of application to study Field Epidemiology in the MSc Epidemiology Programme of the University of the Witwatersrand.  Wits postgraduate application forms can be accessed online at Also visit the following page for the discipline-specific requirements:

Applicants should note to apply for accommodation if they require it. The deadline for accommodation application is 30 October 2018.

All these completed forms should be submitted to SAFETP via Gloria Motshudi, e-mail or and

You may also hand deliver the above application forms to Gloria Motshudi, SAFETP Administration Office, Room L6, PRF Reception Building, NICD, No 1 Modderfontein Road, Sandringham, Johannesburg.

For enquiries or more information, please contact:

SAFETP: Gloria Motshudi, telephone +27 11 386 6542 e-mail or

University of Pretoria: Mrs René de Waal at   or Mr Reuben Semenya at

University of the Witwatersrand: Busi Mamabolo, telephone: +27 11 717 2605, email 

Closing dates:

University of Pretoria – 31 July 2018

University of the Witwatersrand – 31 July 2018

SAFETP – 31 July 2018

Correspondence will be made with shortlisted candidates only. If you have not heard from SAFETP within 6 weeks of the final closing date, please consider your application to be unsuccessful.