9 KZN Department of Health Career Opportunities

There are a variety of jobs in healthcare, and an increasing need for people to fill these positions. Some are clinical jobs, while the others are technical ones. However, did you know that these career opportunities are made possible by the KZN Department of Health for the citizens of KwaZulu-Natal who wish to work in the medical field?

KZN Department of Health
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The Department of Health of KwaZulu-Natal Province is proud to present various programmes to boost the education of its citizens who are interested in working in healthcare. Furthermore, the provincial government also provides grants for students in need.

Below are the types of career opportunities offered by the KZN Department of Health.


The Ministry of Health of KwaZulu-Natal organizes bursaries for residents of KwaZulu-Natal. It is only available to those studying areas of study that align with the needs announced by the department.

Hence, if your field of study that you are interested in is not listed in the criteria, you may therefore not apply for the bursary. You can find posters advertising the KZN Department of Health’s Bursary Program throughout provincial hospitals, the internet, clinics, and municipal offices.

In particular, the KZN Department of Health offers the bursaries for the following fields of study as identified by the training needs of a particular district:

  1. Bachelor of Audiology
  2. Bachelor of Dentistry / Dental Therapy
  3. Bachelor of Entomology
  4. Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor Surgery (MBCHB)
  5. Bachelor of Nursing
  6. Bachelor of Optometry
  7. Bachelor of Pharmacy
  8. Bachelor of Science Audiology
  9. Bachelor of Science Dietetics
  10. Bachelor of Science Occupational Therapy
  11. Bachelor of Science Physiotherapy
  12. Bachelor of Speech Therapy
  13. Bachelor of Clinical Medical Practice
  14. Biomedical Technology
  15. National Diploma in Medical Orthotics and Prosthetics
  16. National Diploma in Oral Health
  17. National Diploma in Radiography


To be eligible for the programme, you must:

  • Be from KwaZulu-Natal;
  • Not have another degree/diploma;
  • Have a good academic record;
  • Show proof of application/registration to a Tertiary Institution; and
  • Not be in receipt of another bursary.

However, the department will make recommendations on a sliding scale in terms of parents’ income as follow:

  • R0 – R120000: Tuition, meals, books, and accommodation
  • R121000 – R150000: Tuition, meals, and accommodation
  • R151000 – R200000: Tuition, accommodation, books
  • R201000 – R250000: Tuition, accommodation
  • R251000 – R300000: Tuition only

Cuban Medical Training Programme

The South African-Cuban Medical Training programme was initiated in 1998 as part of the effort to address the scarcity of medical doctors in the country’s public health sector within the context of the burden of diseases and the poaching of the health workforce by developed countries.

The programme has so far been successful, producing 246 medical doctors currently employed in different health facilities throughout the country. In particular, the candidates for the programme are largely drawn from rural, under-serviced areas and upon completing their training.

Furthermore, the graduates are placed in outlying rural areas as part of ensuring healthcare services in such areas. However, a total of 388 students are still undergoing training in four different medical schools in Cuba including those who are doing Spanish tuition at the language institute in their first year of study.

The qualification in Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery is completed after successful completion of 12 to 18 months of study at a South African University.


To be eligible for the programme, you must:

  • Be from the KwaZulu-Natal Province and financially needy (i.e. the salary for both parents should not exceed R120 000 per annum);
  • Not be having a National diploma or degree;
  • Have good academic results (i.e. Mathematics, Physical Science, Life / Agricultural Science and English as a home language or first additional language);
  • Not be having another bursary;
  • Be fluent in English; and
  • Have epilepsy history.


As a matter of fact, the department is currently offering a 12-month internship programme for unemployed graduates under the age of 35 years. The department advertises the internship programme according to its needs in January every year. The intake is on the 1st of April each year.


Learnerships are an education and training programme that combines theory with practical where a learnership leads to a qualification that is registered on the National Qualifications Framework (NQF).

Although there is no further explanation regarding this programme, you should visit the official website of the KZN Department of Health for the latest updates.

Clinical Associates

The job purpose for Clinical Associates is to render medically related clinical services within the District Hospitals. Furthermore, the objectives of the post are as follows.

  • Perform patient-centred consultations across all ages in a District Hospital;
  • Apply clinical reasoning in the assessment and management of patients;
  • Provide emergency care;
  • Perform investigative and therapeutic procedures appropriate for a District Hospital;
  • Prescribe appropriate medication within the scope of practice;
  • Facilitate communication and provide basic counselling; and
  • Integrate understanding of family, community, and health system in practice.

In fact, the rigorous, nationally standardized curriculum is competency-based. Thus, it prepares students to provide any medical service within their scope of practice that is delegated to them by the supervising medical practitioner.

Moreover, tooted in problem-based learning, this 3-year course of study emphasizes the acquisition of hands-on clinical skills that Clinical Associates need to take their place as essential members of district-level care teams.


Clinical Associates are required to earn a Bachelor of Clinical Medical Practice from an accredited university to qualify for registration with the Health Professions Council of South Africa.

Nurse Training

You can find an advertisement for nurse training posts in the local newspaper(s), local hospitals, clinics and KZN health website once a year. Instructions in the advert are to be complied with e.g. regarding the information to be submitted and documentation to be uploaded with the application.

Also, it is not necessary to fill in application forms (Z83) at this stage. Besides, take note that you should not deliver an application as it will not be accepted. In other words, you should not send any applications to the training institutions/hospitals or head office (Natalia), or the KwaZulu-Natal College of Nursing.

Due to the large number of applications anticipated, the department will respond to the successful applications only. However, all shortlisted candidates will undergo a compulsory knowledge assessment, medical surveillance including a medical examination and verification of all documentation.

The good news is that the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health will offer financial assistance to successful candidates in the form of a bursary. Nevertheless, you are not eligible for the programme if you have previously benefited from the department’s financial assistance for training.

Ultimately, if you are announced successful, you must sign an agreement with the Department of Health. Moreover, you will have to attend as a full-time student, be prepared to attend lectures and participate in work-integrated learning (WIL) in shifts which shall include public holidays, weekends and nights, within the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health Hospital and Clinics as part of the programme requirements.

On completion of training, you will be registered with the South African Nursing Council as General Nurses category in line with the Nursing Act (Act No. 33 of 2005).


Below are the minimum requirements to be considered for selection to 3-year training programme:

  • Grade 12 (Std 10) – Minimum 25 points
  • English: “E” Higher Grade or “D” Standard Grade
  • Biology / Physics / Chemistry / Physiology: “E” Higher Grade or “D” Standard Grade
  • Mathematics: “E” Higher Grade or “D” Standard Grade
  • National Senior Certificate: Diploma
  • Minimum 25 points (NB: Life Orientation is not scored)
  • English L4
  • Life Science / Physical Science L4
  • Home Language / First Additional Language L3
  • Maths L3 / Maths Literacy L5
  • Life Orientation L4
  • Any other 2 subjects

Paramedic Training

Many young South Africans wish to become paramedics. However, many do not know what the requirements, different training options are and how to access them. Also, most people don’t know that there are several different qualifications available and several different levels of care which paramedics operate at.

To accommodate the public’s interest in paramedics, the KZN Department of Health presents special training. However, KZN EMS only does in-house (for KZN EMS staff only) medical training at its college.


The applicant with a national senior certificate with a higher certificate endorsement must have the following subjects and ratings:

  1. The applicant with a Senior Certificate (Prior to 2009) must have at least a minimum of an E symbol on Higher Grade or a D symbol on Standard Grade for all of the following subjects:
  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Biology and/or Physical Science
  1. National Senior Certificate and must have an achievement rating of at least a Rate Code 3 (40%-49%) for each of the following:
  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Life Sciences and/or Physical Sciences
  1. National Certificate (Vocational), must have achieved a minimum pass of 60% for all of the following subjects:
  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Life Sciences and/or Physical Sciences

Registrar Programme

The Registrar Programme is a training programme for medical practitioners (Doctors) to train as Specialists in various disciplines. Additionally, the period of training is 48 months during which time, for a speciality and 24 months for a sub-speciality (Senior Registrars).

In fact, a candidate registrar is employed by the Department of Health, provides clinical services and gains practical knowledge in the chosen discipline and undergoes academic training through the Nelson R Mandela School of Medicine.

Moreover, on completion of the examinations, applicants will qualify to register as a Specialist with The Health Professions Council of South Africa.


In fact, qualifying medical professionals, who meet the criteria set, as per the advertisement and in some cases, discipline-specific requirements may apply.


The KZN Department of Health provides several positions spread across a variety of places, including:

  • Head Office;
  • District Offices;
  • Hospitals;
  • Community Health Centres; and
  • Registrar Posts.

Through the job portal, you can get information about positions that are currently available, job descriptions, and how to apply. In fact, we have a complete guide on KZN health vacancies. You can find them all there.

Final Note

All in all, we hope that this guide on various career opportunities in the KZN Department of Health can help resolve your dilemma to determine which one is the best for you. So, tell us, which one caught your eye among the nine opportunities above? Feel free to share with us.

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