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Institutes, Centres, Units and Chairs

The Faculty hosts 10 Institutes, Centres or Units. Please click on the links below to find out more about each.





Centre for Ethics & Philosophy of Health Sciences Centre for Maternal, Fetal, Newborn & Child Health Care Centre for Neuroendocrinology





Centre for Viral Zoonoses Environmental Chemical Pollution & Health Research Unit Forensic Anthropology Research Centre Institute for Cellular & Molecular Medicine




Sport, Exercise Medicine & Lifestyle Institute UP Community Orientated Primary Care Research Unit UP Institute for Sustainable Malaria Control  


The Faculty also hosts various Research Units, supported by South African Medical Research Council (SA MRC), amongst others:





Maternal & Infant Health Care Strategies Research Unit (MRC) MRC Collaborating Centre for Malaria Research MRC Stem Cell Research & Therapy Unit Rand Water Chair in Public Health & Water



Maternal and Infant Health Care Strategies Research Unit (MRC)

This Unit was established in September 1997 and strives to increase the quality of life of South African mothers and their babies.

Its mission is to develop health strategies at primary and secondary care levels for mothers and infants by researching solutions to specific problems which are generally acceptable to the women, health care workers and health administrators involved.

Each research programme runs through four phases:

  1. identifying the respective problem by developing audit systems;
  2. developing a solution either by performing systematic reviews of the literature (within the Cochrane Collaboration) or by clinical research;
  3. implementing the proposed solutions; and
  4. testing the effect by using the audit systems already in place.

The Unit uses the ICA Solution audit system as a basis for identifying the problems. The Perinatal Problem Identification Programme (PPIP) - a computer-based perinatal care audit system - was the original system that was developed using the ICA Solution audit system, and the methodology has since been expanded over the years to include audits on severe maternal morbidity, maternal mortality and infant mortality.

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MRC Stem Cell Research and Therapy Unit

According to the World Economic Forum’s 2013-2014 Global Competitiveness Index (GCI), South Africa is ranked 53rd out of 148 countries, one of the major reasons being the high burden of disease which includes communicable (infectious) and non-communicable (including diseases of lifestyle and cancer). The MRC Stem Cell Research Unit will provide a multidisciplinary approach aimed at contributing to the alleviation of communicable and non-communicable diseases in South Africa.

Their main focus is on adult stem cells, namely hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs).  A mojor component of their work will continue to address the ethical, legal and social implications /consequences of the work being done on stem cells.

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Rand Water Chair in Public Health and Water

The Rand Water Chair in Public Health will develop a more coordinated approach to and expand water-related training and research within the Faculty of Health Sciences to address the research needs identified by Rand Water, i.e. drinking water human health risk assessment and epidemiology.

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Regulations for the establishment and operation of institutes, centres and units

The objective of the regulations is to provide a consistent and coherent framework to allow for growth, expansion and consolidation of current and past research activity within identified strategic research foci at the University.

The regulations are based on the following principles:

  1. Separation between basic research, services, social responsibility activities and activities which have primarily a commercial focus.
  2. None of the entities whose formation is defined in this document should have the primary responsibility for offering degree programmes. Degree programmes should be offered by departments or schools, with the participation of the members of these entities.
  3. That full or part-time members of the entities would normally be appointed within academic departments.
  4. That research entities are evaluated at regular, pre-determined intervals to be determined by the Vice-Principal (Research) and/or in consultation with the Senate Research Committee
  5. That entities already established prior to these regulations being approved are to be re-evaluated with a view to making their position congruent within the broader framework provided by this document.
  6. The Research Office will be responsible for the maintenance of an institutional database of all active research entities and their status as determined by the Vice-Principal (Research) and/or the Senate Research Committee (SRC).

Click here to download the document Regulations for the Establishment of Institutes, Centres, Units [S 3563/05]

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Last edited by Nicola VernallEdit