Welcome to the Public Health Association of South Africa (PHASA)

PHASA advocates equitable access to the basic conditions necessary to achieve health for all South African as well as equitable access to effective health care. PHASA will work with other public health associations and related organisations and advocate on national and international issues that impact on the conditions for a healthy society.

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PHASA is a South African national, voluntary, Section 21- Not for Profit Organization, which was established in 2000.

PHASA is dedicated to promote the health and well-being of all South Africans and provides a unique forum to develop professional and academic networks.

Our members include a broad range of public health practitioners in South Africa, Southern Africa, and further afield; including academics, researchers, epidemiologists, public health medicine specialists, as well as public sector employees at national, provincial and local levels



To provide leadership and a collective voice to improve health, through knowledge sharing, capacity building and partnership.

Core Values

The Public Health Association of South Africa is committed to the following core values:

  • Equity

  • Integrity

  • Social responsibility

  • Caring/ compassion/ empathy

  • Partnership

  • Proactive

PHASA has the following Objectives

  • To advocate for the conditions for a healthy society

  • To build an effective organisation

  • To create a multi-disciplinary environment of professional exchange and debate, study and activity through meetings, conferences and workshops for interested people

  • To promote teaching and research in public health issues

  • To support the publication of relevant materials

  • To network with other public health organisations and related organisations

  • To encourage and facilitate measures for disease prevention and health promotion

Strategic Outcomes

PHASA, as a diverse multidisciplinary organization, is therefore in a position to provide leadership on those public health priorities that are not receiving the attention they deserve and in this way improve equity and responsiveness.

To mobilise resources to ensure sustainability of the organisation and the implementation of key activities
Without a strong and effective organisation the other objectives are unlikely to be achieved. The main two components of this objective are to generate sufficient funding and increase membership of the organisation.

To provide leadership in coordinating and setting priorities for the public health community in South Africa and beyond
PHASA has a critical role to play in providing leadership in South Africa by identifying key public health priorities. There are many organisations in South Africa which focus on specific public health issues – HIV, TB etc.

To form a collective voice to influence policy and advocate for public health
PHASA, as a unique organization in South Africa, will aim to become a collective voice for its members to advocate for key public health issues. Through active engagement with policy makers, academics, civil society and the healthcare sector PHASA will harness evidence to be a credible source of information and provider of constructive input to the public health policy discourse.

To nurture and develop public health advocates through capacity building and skills development
The future of public health in South Africa lies with young researchers, academics and practitioners. As an organization PHASA will mentors young professionals and enhance their capacity to advocate and take on leadership roles. PHASA intends to become the preferred provider of accredited CPD activities related to public health.

To provide a platform for public health practitioners for networking and knowledge sharing
As a multi-disciplinary organization, PHASA will provide a platform for public health professionals to engage debate and learn. We will host annual conferences to provide a platform for cutting edge research to be presented and discussed. In the next five years we will strengthen our communication with the public health community and focus on capturing, developing, sharing, and effectively using public health knowledge.

Summary of Strategic Outcomes

  1. To mobilize resources to ensure sustainability of the organization and implementation of key activities

    • To raise sufficient funds to achieve strategic goals and conduct planned activities

    • To grow membership

    • To establish a permanent office with permanent staff

  2. To provide leadership in building the public health community in SA

    • To identify key public health priorities in South Africa

    • To align and focus on priorities where PHASA can make the greatest impact

    • To grow public health as a discipline

    • To recognize the contributions of individuals to public health and improving population health

    • To participate in key national and provincial boards, committees and decision making bodies

  3. To form a collective voice to influence policy and advocate for public health issues

    • To network and partner with other public health organizations in South Africa and beyond

    • To raise the profile of public health priority areas

  4. To nurture and develop future public health advocates and leaders through capacity building and skills development

    • To support young public health researchers

    • To provide support to JuPHASA

    • To host CPD accredited courses, meetings and workshops to develop public health skills

    • To support regional branches in capacity building activities at a local level

  5. To provide a platform for PH practitioners for networking and knowledge sharing

    • To hold conferences in order to provide a platform for presentation of relevant high quality public health research

    • To establish and maintain functional engaged and dynamic sub groups for networking, sharing best practice and targeted advocacy

    • To facilitate a platform for disseminating public health research

    • To engage with editorial committees and others to disseminate key public health research

    • To develop a repository for public health resources

    • To disseminate relevant public health information through various channels


PHASA has an executive committee accountable to its members.

  • All executive members are elected at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) for a three year term.

  • The Secretariat is contracted to the Medical Research Council (MRC) and the organization is financially audited annually.

  • The organisation and management of the organisation is outlined in our Memorandum of Incorporation (MoI)

Governing Documents


Special Interest Groups
Special Interest Groups (SIGs) are a core component of PHASA’s identity as a member-driven organization. They are multidisciplinary groups comprised of researchers, civil society organizations, decision-makers and implementers and they provide a platform for membership interaction and the exchange of experiences around particular issues in health systems research. All SIGs been approved by PHASA Board.