Geriatric Division with Albertina & Albertina & Walter Sisulu Institute of Ageing in Africa

Acting Head: Dr Sebastiana Kalula

The Division of Geriatric Medicine was established in 1987.In 1997, the Health Professions Council of South Africa, recognised Geriatric Medicine as a subspecialty and registered the University of Cape Town as training centre for geriatric medicine.

The Albertina and Walter Sisulu Institute of Ageing in Africa (IAA) was established as a Cross-Disciplinary Group within the Department of Medicine in the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Cape Town, on 1 April 2001. The Institute represents a coalescence of five specialist entities on ageing in the faculty: The division of Geriatric Medicine, the Neurosciences, Neuropsychology, Old Age Psychiatry, and Gerontology Programmes.

The IAA offers innovative education and training programmes and opportunities to undergraduate medical students, registrars in internal medicine, and undergraduate and graduate research students in health sciences and social sciences.

Our emphasis is on multi-disciplinary approach to management of medical, social and psychological needs of older persons. The undergraduate teaching programme is in form of lectures, small group teaching and bedside tutorials. At postgraduate level, we offer a two-year training programme of career registrars. Medical registrars also rotate through the division for three-month periods.


The research programme conducts research that will contribute to evidence-based health and social practices; inform and guide policy; and contribute to the development and expansion of health and social care.    The IAA’s research agenda takes cognisance of local relevance, in consultation with stakeholders, as well as national and global trends in knowledge production for older person’s needs. Three main inter-disciplinary research thrusts are:

Cognitive disorders and vascular disease;
Chronic disease and disability, and quality of care;
Social and economic well-being.
Clinical Services

The IAA provides clinical services to older clients at in-patient, out-patient and community-based facilities. The facilities offer sites for activities of the Education Programme and Research Programme.

Strong clinical programmes deliver comprehensive interdisciplinary care to older persons with physical and cognitive impairment. Clinical care is rendered primarily at Groote Schuur Hospital (a tertiary hospital), GJ Jooste Hospital (a secondary hospital in Manenberg) and    Victoria Hospital(a secondary hospital in Wynberg), as well as at other hospitals and community sites in the Cape Peninsula (Rehoboth Age Exchange and Western Cape Rehabilitation Centre).

Promoting functional independence is a primary goal of Division of Geriatric Medicine. It places as a great an emphasis on health promotion and disease prevention as it does on disease management.


Visit or write to us at:
The Albertina and Walter Sisulu Institute of Ageing in Africa 
University of Cape Town
Faculty of Health Sciences 
L51 Old Main Building 
Groote Schuur Hospital
Cape Town, South Africa 

Dr Sebastiana Kalula

Call or fax us at:
Tel.: + 27 21 406 6211 
Fax: + 27 21 406 6846
E-mail us 

"Leading with Excellence"

Department of Medicine