Helderberg Hospital

About Helderberg Hospital Project

Project Details

Helderberg Hospital is situated in the idyllic town of Somerset West and serves as a district hospital for the Helderberg basin.  Patients are also referred to the hospital from surrounding areas in the Overberg district.  There are 120 inpatient beds which cater for most specialties, including Surgery, Internal Medicine, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Orthopaedics, Paediatrics, Ophthalmology and a 3-bed High Care Unit.  The fulltime medical staff consists of 13 generalist doctors, assisted by part-time specialists in all disciplines.  There is a busy Casualty and Outpatients Department and doctors from the hospital also perform community work at surrounding Primary Health Care Clinics.


Volunteers are accommodated in WTSA’s fully-furnished volunteer house or town apartments in Somerset West, complete with all modern conveniences.  Accommodation is located in upmarket, safe areas with complete security and within walking distance of the CBD, shops, pubs and restaurants.


What will you do?

Volunteers will fall into one of the following three categories:

General Volunteers:  These volunteers do not need formal qualifications and are not required to have any medical or associated skills.  They must, however, have a sincere interest in medicine and a compassionate nature.  General Volunteers will be able to job shadow and learn extensively from doctors across all departments, but will only be allowed limited hands-on experience due to their lack of a formal medical qualification. 

Medical Students:  These are students currently completing undergraduate medical, nursing or ancillary professional qualification(s).  Medical Students undertake a formal medical elective period, where they will be able to job shadow and learn extensively from doctors across all departments.  Medical Students will be allowed hands-on experience in certain procedures under senior supervision of a local doctor, depending on their completed study year and individual skill.

Medical Interns (House Doctors):  Medical Interns are already-qualified graduates in possession of a formal medical or ancillary professional qualification(s).  As newly qualified doctors and nurses, Medical Interns will continue their extensive learning across all departments and will be allowed to utilise their skills and qualifications under the senior supervision of resident doctors and qualified staff members.

Volunteers will work on a rotational basis within the following ten departments:  Casualty (Trauma), Medical, Surgical, Paediatrics (children), Neonatology, Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Operating Theatre, Outpatient Department and Radiography & Casualty (repeat).  Volunteers will be rotated between the different departments, facilitating a very rewarding and diverse experience, especially for volunteers making career or study decisions.

South Africa, Western Cape, Somerset West
Minimum Duration:
4 Weeks
Maximum Duration:
12 Weeks
Airport Pickup
Arrival Orientation


Past Volunteer Comments