Registrar Programme

The Registrar programme is a training programme for medical practitioners (Doctors) to train as Specialists in various disciplines.

The period of training is 48 months during which time, for a specialty and 24 months for a sub specialty (Senior Registrars), 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 and on completion of the examinations, qualifies to register as a Specialist with The Health Professions Council of South Africa.

More details on the academic programme can be obtained on the Nelson R Mandela School of Medicine website which has links to the different schools.

The Health Professions Council of SA accredits the Medical School to train these specialists by granting training numbers (N Numbers) or S numbers in the case of sub specialties.

Registrars are employed by the Department and at the end of the 48 months they are expected to leave the training post irrespective if they have completed their examinations or not. This is to ensure that the new group of Registrars can be appointed so that the potential pool of specialists grows. The appointment is on a contractual basis.

During the training period, registrars rotate through various hospitals in the three complexes namely:

    Psychiatric including
  • King George V,
  • Fort Napier and
  • Townhill
  • How does one join the programme?

    There will be an intake for January of each year. Qualifying medical professionals, who meet the criteria set, as per the advertisement and in some cases discipline specific requirements may apply.

    A smaller advert normally appears in the Sunday Times directing applicants to the Departments website . Copies of the advertisement also appear on the notice board of the UKZN medical school and on the discipline specific notice boards.

REG17/2022: Registrar (medical). Closing date 29 November 2021
Applicants are to note that the virtual information session will take place after the closing date. Applications must therefore be submitted.

Pre-application briefing session video


  • Anaesthetics
  • Cardiothoracic surgery
  • Dermatology
  • Emergency Medicine
  • ENT
  • Family Medicine
  • Forensic Medicine
  • General Surgery
  • Internal Medicine
  • Neurology
  • Neurosurgery
  • Nuclear Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Occupational Medicine
  • Oncology
  • Ophthalmology
  • Orthopaedics
  • Paediatrics and Child Health
  • Paediatric surgery
  • Plastic Surgery
  • Psychiatry
  • Public Health Medicine
  • Radiology
  • Urology
For further information on the registrar programme, please email

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This page last edited on 17 November, 2021

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