Rehabilitation Services | Western Cape Government

Rehabilitation Services


Rehabilitation services are made for people with medical, post-surgical, post-trauma, neurological, orthopaedic, musculo-skeletal and other conditions. These include burns victims, head injuries, strokes, trauma, hand injuries, amputation, respiratory, cardiac and other disorders.

The service is necessary but it's not broad enough and fails to reach many people in need due to a lack of resources. Most public sector services are based in hospitals and special schools, with few services available at community levels.


Available Services:

Primary level and step-down rehabilitation services is primarily focused on the management of acute conditions, home-based visits, the training of family and care givers, screening for disability grants and consultation with NGOs, support groups, schools and crèches.

Secondary level rehabilitation services are for people with a temporary or more permanent disability.

Tertiary level rehabilitation services provides ICU/high-care and acute stage management of people with spinal cord injuries, as well as vocational rehabilitation. This involves mostly work assessment, which tests the readiness of clients to re-enter the open labour market after injury or illness. 

Specialist and academic rehabilitation provides a high-intensity rehabilitation service for physically disabled adults, which caters for each patient’s individual rehabilitation needs. 


Primary level and step-down rehabilitation services:

Primary level rehabilitation services are limited to certain community health centres and district hospitals. Primary level rehabilitation services are limited to certain community health centres and district hospitals.

For more information about available services, phone the regional rehabilitation managers at the following numbers:

Worcester Hospital: Mrs Elbie Vosloo
Tel: 023 348 1113

Cape Winelands District : Ms Handri Liebenberg
Tel: 023 348 8100

George Hospital: Desiree van der Vyver
Tel: 044 802 4472

Helderberg Hospital: Ms Sharon Leo 
Tel: 021 850 4700

Karl Bremer Hospital: Jonathan Lucas 
Tel: 021 918 1223 

Paarl Hospital: Dr Breslau Kruger
Tel: 021 860 2501

New Somerset Hospital: Dr Donna Stokes
Tel: 021 402 6408

Victoria Hospital: Jonathan Vaughan 
Tel: 021 799 1201

However, all clinics do routine developmental screening for babies and toddlers. When there’s a suspected mental or physical disability, the child will be referred to a specialist clinic at secondary or tertiary level.

At the same time, the child will be referred to a rehabilitation professional, such as a physiotherapist or occupational therapist, at primary healthcare level where available.

Booth Hospital in Cape Town and LifeCare Hospital in Pinelands make provision for low-intensity rehabilitation and step-down care, while services for children are available at Sarah Fox and Maitland Cottage, which is also in Cape Town. Clients will be referred to secondary or tertiary level care if necessary.

Secondary level rehabilitation services:

Secondary level rehabilitation services are provided to a limited degree by various regional hospitals.

Rehabilitation for people who’ve had strokes, amputations or spinal injuries continues to be available at the new state-of-the-art, custom-built Western Cape Rehabilitation Centre in Mitchell's Plain.

Tertiary level rehabilitation services:

Tertiary level rehabilitation services are provided by Tygerberg Hospital, Groote Schuur Hospital and Red Cross Children's Hospital. Psychiatric hospitals (Stikland, Lentegeur, Valkenberg and Alexandra Hospital) also carry out these services. These hospitals are located in and around Cape Town.
Specialist and academic rehabilitation:

The Western Cape Rehabilitation Centre in Cape Town is the only in-patient rehabilitation unit servicing the entire Western Cape Province and neighbouring provinces. This is a specialised outpatient clinic for assessment and management of rehabilitation needs. 


If you’re physically and mentally disabled, you’ll need to first check if there’s a service at a primary healthcare level. After this, you’ll be referred if it’s necessary.

If you’re a first time visitor to a health facility, you’ll be asked to:

  • fill out a form and a folder will be opened,
  • your ID,
  • a referral letter from the clinic will be required when visiting a hospital,
  • hospitals will ask for your most recent payslip/income assessment (IRP5),
  • any medication you’re taking at the time of your visit,
  • clinic or hospital card if previously registered at the facility,
Provided At: These facility categories:
And these facilities:
Provided by:
Government Body: (Western Cape Government)

If you are unemployed or dependent on any government grant, the service is free.

However, if you’re disabled or able-bodied but employed you’ll be charged according to your income. 
Exceptions are made for those who earn a low income and can’t afford the medical expenses. To qualify you’ll need to produce:

  • a copy of your ID,
  • a most recent pay slip, and
  • an affidavit.
The content on this page was last updated on 8 April 2021