Health Sciences Research

Centre for Clinical Research, Innovation and Translation (CCRIT)

The Faculty of Health Sciences has identified the development of a clinical research facility as an essential resource to advance its research agenda. The clinical and scientific research programme of the Centre for Clinical Research, Innovation and Translation (CCRIT) will focus on the most significant health problems of South Africa and Africa including communicable and non-communicable diseases.

The CCRIT will promote multidisciplinary clinical research projects; encourage collaborations among basic, public health and clinical scientists; train physicians and other health professionals in clinical research; develop and maintain a critical mass of expert clinical investigators; provide resources in which advances in basic scientific knowledge will be translated into new or improved methods of health care; provide the necessary core infrastructure and services to support clinical researchers for both investigator-initiated and contract research; support investigators by assisting in the design and coordination of research activities; facilitate a range of other key services to investigators, including novel technologies and bioinformatics support; and promote collaborations with other universities and industry that will enhance its mission.

To promote global health equity and developing country perspective on contemporary global health. Three platforms: research, education, collaborating centre in developing countries.

UCT Global Health Initiative

The challenges of global health represent a clear and present threat to the health and wealth of individuals and communities around the world, and it is developing countries that are hardest hit. There has been a concerted effort internationally to address these challenges. Academic institutions too have risen to the challenge of developing solutions to the global health threat. The vast majority of these initiatives originate in developed countries even while most of their efforts are focused on developing countries – these have not yet emerged as equal partners to their counterparts in the international arena. UCT is seeking to establish its own initiative to promote global health equity and to develop a strong southern and developing country perspective on contemporary global health. The initiative is multidisciplinary and will integrate cross-faculty expertise within UCT as it relates to health, social, legal and biological sciences, focusing expertise on these challenges to health. The UCT initiative will develop on three platforms: in research; in education; and as a collaborating centre in a developing country. Visit the UCT Health Sciences website for more information.

Centre for Substance Abuse

Substance abuse in South Africa is twice the global norm and, according to research from the Central Drug Authority of South Africa, is costing the economy upward of R20 billion a year. Yet, while substance abuse disorders are hugely disruptive to the social fabric, they remain inadequately treated. A number of factors contribute to this including stigma, the fact that key decision-makers do not consider substance abuse disorders to be medical disorders and insufficient funding of research. The Faculty of Health Sciences at UCT is spearheading the establishment of a Centre for Substance Abuse Studies to provide more substantive data around this issue. Such a Centre would investigate the underlying mechanisms of the abuse and the development of effective and sustainable treatment programmes. The Faculty of Health Sciences at UCT is well placed to drive this initiative. It has a strong commitment to the psychiatric sub-specialities, and is located in a region with extremely high substance abuse rates.

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