African Paediatric Fellowship Programme

Frequently Asked Questions

Admission | Access | Accommodation  About Cape Town | Finance | General | Medical Aid | Travel


I am interested in your programme.  How do i find out if i am eligible?
See the application guidelines to see if you are eligible.

I haven't been registered with HPCSA yet. Will I be able to start my training?
We do not encourage fellows to enter the African Paediatric Fellowship Programme if they are not registered with HPCSA. Please do remember this when you are applying for study leave. It is very important that your study leave start date remains flexible as there are many variables that could cause a delay in your HPCSA registration. You will need to make the necessary arrangements with your Head of Department/Supervisor so that you can start your study leave once you've had confirmation that you are registered with HPCSA.
Should you, however, choose to enter the programme without HPCSA you will need to be aware of the following:

  • You will not receive any bursary payments until your HPCSA registration has been finalised.
  • You will not be able to do any hands-on/clinical work without your HPCSA registration. You will only be able to observe.

How will I register at University of Cape Town?
It will be your responsibility to do the online UCT registration application prior to you entering the APFP. You will be provided with an application number which is your student number.
On arrival the administrator will process documentation in order for you to be cleared with the International Office(IAPO) You will only be able to register at Faculty once you have been cleared at IAPO.


How can I get a UCT access card?
Once you have been accepted into the programme and have completed the UCT registration process,
you will be given a UCT student card.

How can I get a hospital access card?
The APFP Administrator will apply for a hospital access card for you. You will need to accompany the APFP Administrator to the Access Control Office so that the staff can take a photo which will appear on your access card.

I need to email home. Where can I access the internet?
You can make arrangements with the APFP administrator to make use of the computers in the computer lab. Once you are registered as a UCT student you will also be able to make use of the computers at the library.


Accommodation in areas around Red Cross and Groote Schuur Hospitals (e.g. Rondebosch, Claremont, Rosebank and Observatory) are expensive but quite accessible.  There are school in each of these areas making it easier for you and your family.

About Cape Town:

Telephone: 021
Country code: 0027
City code: 021

South Africa has 11 official languages, though most people can speak English. Afrikaans and Xhosa are also widely spoken in Cape Town and the Western Cape.

Cape Town has a climate similar to that of California and the Mediterranean. Winter starts in June and ends in September and is generally a wet and windy season. Temperatures are cool and tend to range between 7°C (45°F) and 17°C (63°F). Summer lasts from November to March and temperatures range between 19°C (66°F) and 35°C (95°F). The summer season is usually hot and sunny. It can be windy, but it doesn’t bring much rain.

Monetary information:
The currency is the Rand (ZAR). The South African exchange rate is favourable to most currencies, including the pound, euro and dollar. Most restaurants, shops and hotels accept international credit cards. Value added tax, or VAT, is 14% and is included in the price of all items, but can be claimed by foreign visitors when leaving the country.


What will the APFP pay for during my training?
The APFP Bursary is designed to supplement the applicants' own funding during the training period. The bursary does not extend to support of family members. The bursary includes the following:

APFP covers the following university, affiliation and additional costs:

  • UCT registration fees
  • Health Professional Council of South Africa (HPCSA) registration fees (will be reimbursed)
  • Health Professional Council of South Africa (HPCSA) Annual fees (will be reimbursed)
  • Post Grad Admin fee (will be reimbursed)
  •  Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) documents verification fees (will be reimbursed)
  • Study permit application fee (will be reimbursed)
  • Certain courier costs (will be reimbursed)
  • Medical Protection Society (medical insurance)
  • Return airfare (will be reimbursed if you have booked)
  • A monthly stipend (which forms part of the total bursary)

Other applicable expenses during the period of training may be submitted to the committee for consideration with appropriate motivation. In addition to this, operating and administrative costs are paid by APFP.

What will my stipend need to cover?
These are the types of personal expenses that you could expect to cover:-

Rent**, Medical Aid, Living costs**, Groceries, Transport, Sundries, Admin*** 

*  The cost of rent will vary according to the type of accommodation you secure. Rental in a room in a shared house, would be cheaper, approximately R3 500 per month. Note that some places may cost more or less. Upfront damages deposit equivalent to one months' rent may be required. This is refundable, after deductions (if any), at the end of the lease period.
**  Living costs include electricity, local telephone, laundry, cleaning and toiletries.
***Admin includes any books, stationery or admin related expenses you might incur.

All fellows have said that they find Cape Town to have an extremely high cost of living. Cellphone charges and electricity is quite high for example. The APFP bursary is meant to cover the necessities during your training period. We request that all trainees acquire additional funding to supplement the bursary they receive.

Additionally, there is a one to two month period of "processing of documentation" when you arrive in Cape Town. This is when the additional funding is important. You will need to have funding available for the first 2 months to carry you through that period before you get your bursary processed and paid to you. There are many additional expenses to consider. These are some of the additional expenses that you may incur:

  • Items such as mobile phone services(which are extremely useful, highly recommended but can be significantly expensive compared to other countries), car hire or car purchase, holiday trips undertaken, etc.
  • It is a requirement for example that a deposit needs to be paid for accommodation to secure it. This could be up to 2 months rent plus the rent for the upcoming month.
  • If you are moving into an unfurnished flat, you need to consider all of the necessities that you need to purchase to furnish the flat.
  • Even if you are moving into a furnished flat, the flat may not have electrical appliances.
  • Our winters are very cold. You will need to make provision both for warm clothing as well as to make yourself comfortable at home, i.e. heaters, etc.
  • Fellows are able to make requests for financial assistance to attend certain courses and congresses. The funding is subject to availability and approval from the APFP committee. The funding will, however, not cover all of your expenses. You will be required to cover the balance of the expenses from your own pocket. For example, APFP covers R6300 for a local conference. The registration fee might be R3500 which means that you will have a balance of R2800 which could be used towards abstract submission, flight or accommodation. You then have to pay whatever the shortfall is.

What process do I follow if I need to be reimbursed?
The APFP Administrator will process the reimbursement for you. In order to be reimbursed you will need to bring along an original invoice plus your original proof of payment or a receipt for payment made.
There is a Reimbursement form that you will need to sign in order for the reimbursement to be processed. The whole reimbursement process can take up to 3 weeks. A cheque will be issued in your name. You will need to deposit the cheque into your bank account. Clearance on the cheques takes a couple of days. It varies from bank to bank. Please check these details with your bank.

When will my first stipend be paid?
You will need to follow the UCT registration process prior to you receiving your first stipend. Stipends can only be issued once the student has been registered as a UCT student.  This registration process can take between 1 - 1 ½ months.

How will the stipend be paid to me?
Part of the registration process at UCT is to supply the University of Cape Town with a current South African bank account. Once you have been registered you will receive a UCT student number. Payments can only be made once you have this student number.
You will be required to sign a bursary form (Postgraduate Centre and Funding Office-Departmental Claim Form) in order for your stipend to be paid to you. The clearance process takes approximately three weeks from date of signature. The money is paid directly into your bank account.

Will my travelling be paid for if I need to do training at other hospitals?
The stipend should be used for travel expense even if it is to attend other hospitals as part of training. Ideally the training supervisor should assist the trainee getting to each centre.

Can I use the entire stipend on my personal needs?
You should allocate at least R5 000 per month of your stipend towards accommodation and R316 per month towards medical aid for yourself. The balance of the stipend can be used for your personal needs.

How do I then pay for the accommodation and my medical aid?
You will be invoiced for your accommodation by your landlord. The responsibility lies on you to pay for your accommodation.
For the Medical Aid you will need to complete the attached Medical Aid form. You do not have to use this provider but we believe this rate is good. Read the details carefully as to what cover it provides. You will be invoiced by Ingwe. You will then be responsible for paying for the cost of the invoice.

I'm staying in private accommodation with my family, will the APFP pay for my accommodation?
The APFP bursary does not include cover for your family.

Can I request a cash advance on my stipend should I run out of money or need money in a case of emergency?
The APFP does not provide cash advances to fellows. It is expected of the fellow to handle his/her money responsibly so that it will last for the full period.

Will the APFP buy the stationery and textbooks i need?
Your stipend should cover the costs of your stationery and textbooks.

What else can I apply to the fund for?
You are able to forward an application for Congress or course attendance. Please be aware that the approval of the funding is at the discretion of the APFP committee. The following factors are taken into consideration:

  • Have you applied for previous courses or congresses? A certain budget is allocated for courses or congresses. Not every fellow will be able to attend a course and/or a congress.
  • Will you be presenting some research or a poster at the congress? Funding is more likely to be achieved if you are presenting.
  • Is funding available in the budget to allow you to attend the course or congress?

Do I pay for my own UCT fees?
The APFP bursary includes the payment of your UCT registration fees.

Why do I need a bank account?
Your stipend will be paid directly into your personal bank account. Your bursary cannot be paid until you have entered your banking details on the UCT database system(PeopleSoft).


What can be expected of me once I start?

  • As part of your training you will be an integral part of the team working under your supervisor.
  • You will have 3-monthly assessments/reports.
  • You will have a formal assessment at 1 year to confirm you have achieved your goals set by yourself, your referring centre and your supervisor.
  • You should remain in contact with your referring centre to update them of your skills achieved and your plans to improve child health service when you return.

Who will orientate me in the department where I will be training?
Your training supervisor will set up time to do the orientation with you.

Can I extend my training?
You would need to communicate early with your training supervisor to see if this is possible. Extended training is usually only authorised if a final MMed/MPhil/exit exam is intended. Full funding cannot be guaranteed. The funding is at the discretion of the APFP committee.

What qualifications do I leave with when I complete my training?
This depends on your training area. 1 year trainees who do not undertake a diploma will leave with a certificate of completion and a letter from the training supervisor confirming skills achieved. Trainees who complete the full specialised training time can achieve a MMed/MPhil/exit exam.

Medical Aid:

When I can I get to use my Ingwe medical aid?
Once you have been registered with Ingwe and you have received the Certificate of Membership, you will be able to use your Medical Aid immediately. It might still take a while before you receive your Medical Aid card but the certificate is your proof that you belong to your medical aid.

Which Ingwe service providers can I visit in the area?
The APFP Administrator will provide you with a list of Network providers.

What does Ingwe cover me for?
Please consult the Ingwe leaflet for details of the cover you will receive. If you are uncertain about certain benefits please call Rowena Linderoth of Ingwe at (021) 468 2900.


Will I be able to make use of the Jammie Shuttle?
Yes, you will be able to make use of the Jammie Shuttle. All of the Jammie Shuttle routes are found online. You may need to produce a UCT student card.

Where are the best places to do shopping?
In the Mowbray area you will find Shoprite Supermarket on the Main Road where you will be able to purchase grocery & house goods. If you seeking more of a variety you will need to travel to Claremont. Mr Price & PEP stores are reasonable where clothes are concerned but if you do a little bit of shopping around you will become familiar with several other reasonably-priced shops in Claremont.

Bus Service
To commute around the city you can catch the Golden Arrow Bus Service, a means of transport used by the public and tickets are purchased on entering the bus or the MyCiTi, which is a high-quality bus-based transit system that delivers fast, comfortable, and cost-effective transportation.  A 'myconnect" bus card will need to be purchased from the main station at the Civic Centre in Cape Town . Click here for MyCiti routes.

Travelling by miniBus taxi and metered taxi services:
Minibus taxis service most areas on dedicated routes and are frequently available, inexpensive and convenient since loading and offloading happens on demand pretty much anywhere en route. Payment is made on board and it is a good idea to ensure you have change as the driver may not always be able to assist. Prices start from approximately R7 to R10 per trip (for around the Cape Town central city area or from the CBD to the V&A Waterfront) with amounts increasing according to the distance travelled. Find out more at "A visitor's guide to using the minibus service"
Metered taxis operate from the airport, city centre and key nodes in accommodation and business areas. Taxis can be identified by a roof light or sign denoting "TAXI". Fares have to be openly displayed on the vehicle and are calculated per kilometre travelled. Click here for list of taxi services.