Explanatory notes on a call for private health practitioners to serve in public health services for the duration of the Covid 19 crisis

The Western Cape Provincial Department of Health are looking for health professionals to take up temporary employment to assist with delivery of health care services in the public sector for the Covid-19 period.

This recruitment drive is not for permanent employment but to help in a time of crisis

  • Participation is voluntary
  • Engagement is welcomed

There is a need for professionals to care for:

  • Covid-19 patients in public hospitals, including relief of, and support for full-time professionals in acute settings, including the intermediate care at ‘Field Hospitals’
  • PHC settings such as triage at ‘Fever Clinics’
  • Non-Covid19 patients in different in- and outpatient settings who require clinical care
  • Vaccinators to assist with the administering of COVID-19 vaccines at vaccine sites
  1. What kind of work will I do?
    • The actual work will depend on your risk profile, qualifications, and skills
    • If you are over 60 years of age or suffer from comorbidities you will not be deployed to any risk environment and may be asked to work in a call-centre, support telephone consultations or other safer clinical tasks
    • The scope of work options depends on where the provincial department of health experiences staff shortages and will be different from one district or hospital to another
    • Administering COVID 19 vaccines
    • The needs may change as the epidemic changes
  2. Will I be area bound or will I be forced to move and work somewhere else?
    • You may expect to be reasonably area bound near to where you reside, remembering that need may be some distance away, and you may be offered work outside your residential area
    • If you are asked to help elsewhere it will always be done in consultation with you
  3. What will I be paid?
    • You will be employed as a public servant and will be paid what all other public servants with your job, qualifications and experience are paid
    • Benchmarks for all Jobs plus the Grade and Salary level are prescribed and published in the website of the Department of Public Service and Administration
    • Remuneration levels are according to qualification, years qualified; there are many steps, but the tables attached reflect some professional benchmarks
    • Remuneration can be paid for different levels of commitment, such as 6/8th, 5/8th, 3/8th, or sessions on an hourly rate. The Western Cape will utilise only the sessional appointment approach. Applications for full time employment need to follow a separate process through a current block advert.
    • Statutory prescriptions require that the appropriate PAYE and COIDA deductions are made
    • Employment is administered on the government’s personnel administration system (Persal) and the employment contracts are entered into with the appropriate Provincial Department of Health

Table 1A: Indicative levels of remuneration for Medical Officers (GPs)

Medical Officer (GP)

Annual package

Monthly package

Monthly 6/8th

Monthly 5/8th

Monthly 3/8th


821 205

 68 433

51 325

42 771

25 662


1 362 366

 113 530

85 148

70 956

42 574


1 091 785

 90 976

68 232

56 860

34 116

Table 1B: Indicative levels of remuneration for Specialists

Medical Specialist

Annual package

Monthly package

Monthly 6/8th

Monthly 5/8th

Monthly 3/8th


1 106 040

 92 170

69 128

57 606

34 564


1 834 890

 152 907

114 680

95 567

57 340


1 470 465

 122 538

91 904

76 586

45 952

Table: Sessional Medical remuneration per hour are as follows:


Less than 5 years’ experience

At least 5 years, but less than 10 years, relevant experience

10 years and more relevant experience

Medical Officer

R 395.00

R 452.00

R 524.00

Medical Specialist

R 532.00

R 608.00

R 706.00

  1. What benefits are included?
    • Paid leave is not applicable to sessional appointments for such a short period
    • No other allowances allowed for temporary employees
  1. What is the application process?
    • The Western Cape has a facility for electronic applications.
    • The starting point is the completion of a Z83 (Application for employment) (pdf, 63.64 KB) form which captures the basic data required or an application
    • Applicants are required to attach several documents:
    • Drivers licence
    • ID document (or passport)
    • Copies of qualifications (Matric certificate and graduate certificates)
    • Registration with a professional council
    • The Human Resource administration will get back to you with any queries and is the department that informs an applicant of the outcome of the employment – who to contact to commence the employment
  1. How long will I wait for payment?
    • All public sector payments must be made within 30 days
    • The advantage of employment contracts is that payments are made on set dates with a payroll run, in the employment month
  1. Who will provide me with PPE?
    • PPE is provided for every employee by the employer according to a clear policy related to the risk of the job
  1. What duration will I be employed for?
    • For this dispensation, the duration of temporary employment will be for the peak of the epidemic
    • Provinces are expecting peak demand for services at different dates so the actual dates will differ
    • Employees may terminate employment if the circumstances turn out to be unworkable
  1. What are the working hours?
    • The working hours are related to the specific job that you are engaged for (if you are only available to do night calls or weekend calls then the hours will differ from a person assisting in outpatients or in a clinic)
  1. Who will I report to?
    • The employment contract will be with the WC Department of Health
    • The National Department of Health does not deliver services and will only play a role in facilitating interaction with a relevant province
    • In the provincial departments there are clear reporting structures
    • In a hospital the CEO is in charge and clinical authority is delegated to clinical managers
    • In a PHC environment the District Manager is in charge and there are facility managers
  1. What is the indemnity cover?
    • As an employee, while serving in the public service, the state provides cover and the provincial Department of Health will represent you in the event of any claim against you
    • This cover does not extend outside of the public service platform for which your employment is contracted