South African Field Epidemiology Training Programme: 2016 intake

The South African Field Epidemiology Training Programme (SAFETP) is requesting applications for the incoming 2016 class from qualified health professionals with an interest in public health and commitment to public service.

SAFETP is jointly sponsored by the National Department of Health (NDOH), the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) of the National Health Laboratory Services (NHLS), the University of Pretoria (UP) and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The programme is a combination of didactic and practical training in which the resident is grounded in the academic basics of public health and is assigned to field sites where s/he learns by doing while being mentored by supervisors in projects that address key public health priorities.

This residency programme is a two year, full time training, from which residents graduate with a Masters in Public Health (MPH) from the University of Pretoria. The 2016 cohort will begin in January 2016 and end in December 2017.

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 / NDOH staff that have been funded and granted study leave will be required to continue working for the NICD/ NDOH respectively for at least two (2) years after completing the MPH programme.

South Africans and permanent residents who are funded by their employers must ensure that this funding covers their salaries/stipends, 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 2 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 a health, laboratory or public health related field from an accredited university):

  • A medical, veterinary or dentistry degree ; OR
  • A doctorate degree 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 fulfill the minimum educational requirements of the University of Pretoria 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, Power Point and Outlook for use in communication, word processing, analysis, presentation and report generation
  • Have a valid driver’s license and willingness 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 on our website
  2. 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
    5. Non South African 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 follow the process for applying online

All these completed forms should be submitted to: SAFETP via: Athalia Mathatho, e-mail or

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

For enquiries or more information please contact:

Athalia Mathatho, e-mail or

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