Established in 1993, the School of Public Health is unique in many respects both in South Africa and in the continent
- Academic programme: popular in South Africa and other African countries for its flexible, modular, part-time design and growing array of distance learning materials. The school offers a post-graduate diploma, Masters and PhD programme in public health.
- Annual Summer and Winter Schools: probably the largest continuing education programme in Public Health in Africa, having trained over 12 000 participants since 1992.
- Designated as a WHO Collaborating Centre for Research and Training in Human Resource for Health Development since 2004.
- Hosts two SARCHI chairs in Health Systems, Complexity and Social Change; and Health Systems Governance.
- Houses a SAMRC Extramural Research Unit on Health Services to Systems.
- Most research focuses on health policy and systems; social determinants of health; building a district-based public health system; and pharmaceutical public health.