From 1 April 2021, all visitors to the University of Cape Town's (UCT) campuses are required to use the UCT Daily Health Screening website for their mandatory COVID-19 screening.
The website, which is already live and accessible on smartphones, laptops, desktops and the UCT Mobile app, will replace the use of the Higher Health website and ensure the streamlining of processes put in place to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
UCT's Campus Protection Services (CPS) officers will continue to accept screening results from Higher Health until 31 March. Thereafter, all staff members, students and visitors coming to campus are required to present the outcome of their UCT Daily Health Screening to CPS officers on request. Should anyone struggle to complete the screening before arriving on campus, CPS representatives stationed on site are trained to assist.
The screening only takes a few minutes to complete and delivers immediate results. It must be completed every time staff, students or visitors come to one of UCT's campuses.
"The UCT Daily Health Screening [website] caters for the needs of our community as well as your privacy."
In a recent Campus Communication, UCT's chief operating officer, Dr Reno Morar, provided further information on the screening website.
"The UCT Daily Health Screening [website] caters for the needs of our community as well as your privacy," he said.
"[It] meets the government's requirements, while incorporating customised features to meet the specific needs of UCT."
Dr Morar added that the site has been tested across various platforms to ensure ease of use. Its design helps keep UCT staff, students and visitors safe, by alerting users as to who may need medical attention or testing.
"It will allow our health practitioners in the Occupational Health Unit (OHU) from the Properties and Services department, and the Student Wellness Service (SWS) from the Department of Student Affairs, to assist in managing the possible risks related to the COVID-19 pandemic," he said.
Morar urged everyone to remain vigilant, and to complete the screening honestly and accurately.
"We have a joint responsibility to ensure that all our campuses comply with regulations and are safe for all staff, students and visitors who access them," he said.
Importantly, special care is taken to protect staff and students with health vulnerabilities and comorbidities that put them at higher risk of infection.
"Your health information will not be shared with any party other than the health practitioners assigned."
Through the website and screening process, users are encouraged to remain vigilant about their daily interactions and symptoms, thereby helping the university and the campus community to protect the lives of others.
In terms of privacy, Morar made the assurance that all personal information will be treated confidentially, and with the appropriate access and audit controls in place.
"Your health information will not be shared with any party other than the health practitioners assigned to deal with OHU and SWS matters. Please be assured that your information will not be used for any purpose other than for the safety and security of staff and students."
Morar also acknowledged the Occupational Health, Safety and Environment Unit; Information and Communication Technology Services; and the Properties and Services technology team for developing the site "with such care and attention to UCT's needs". He also thanked everyone who helped to test its usability.
In closing, Morar reminded the campus community to remain aware, and to continue practising the key interventions to help stop the spread of COVID-19: wear a face mask at all times; maintain a physical distance of at least 1.5 m from others; and wash or sanitise hands regularly.
Additional information on the UCT Daily Health Screening website is available online (including a frequently-asked questions section), and queries can be sent to email@example.com.
For assistance with the outcome of screening results, staff can contact the Occupational Health Helpline on 021 650 0999, while students may contact SWS on 021 650 1271/5620.