Centre for Ethics and Philosophy of Health Sciences


Welcome to the website of UP’s Centre for Ethics and Philosophy of Health Sciences (CEPHS)

The CEPHS is situated in the Faculty of Health Sciences but hosts associates from several faculties at the University of Pretoria. It focusses on the scholarly domains of ethics and philosophy in relation to health theory, practice and research. The conceptual sophistication afforded by philosophy is taken as being crucial in health ethics as well as professional practice and theoretical engagements of all health sciences. The CEPHS fulfills an important need in South Africa, Africa and internationally by building scholarly knowledge and skills capacity across various academic and professional disciplines. The Centre’s focus on health ethics and the philosophy of health sciences is connected to the international burgeoning interest in medical humanities.


The acronym CEPHS resembles the Latin word “cephala” meaning “heads”, which may be interpreted as a metaphor for the Centre’s associates and students as well as its interest in matters of the head (e.g., philosophy, thinking and mental health).




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