Professor Inge Petersen delivers annual Alan J Flisher Memorial Lecture: Implementing and scaling up integrated primary mental health care in the real world.

Welcome to the Centre for Rural Health (CRH)​

We are based within the School of Nursing and Public Health in the College of Health Sciences. 

Building on a strong foundation to develop and improve healthcare in rural communities, the CRH strives to be a Centre of Excellence to improve the health and well-being of people living in all under-served areas. To this end the CRH engages in interdisciplinary implementation science research in collaboration with strategic partners to strengthen health systems and services in South Africa within the framework of learning health systems.

Treating Depression in South Africa

The Programme for Improving Mental Health Care (PRIME), developed a district mental healthcare plan (MHCP) in South Africa that integrates mental healthcare for depression, alcohol use disorders and schizophrenia into standard care for chronic physical conditions. Ma Agnes is one of many patients who received treatment during PRIME’s implementation. 

Our Vision and Mission

To be at the forefront of innovative knowledge production and human capital development that promotes learning health systems in resource-scarce contexts.

Our focus areas include:


Focusing on innovation and service delivery improvement within resource constraints and extending to improving governance, participation and universal access.


Focusing on pre-service health professions education and in-service workforce preparedness, including the necessary organizational support and human resource management to meet the needs of the under-served, and changing demands placed on the health care system by the changing disease profile towards chronic care.


Extending the focus to social determinants of health such as poverty, hunger and food security, illiteracy, social equity and development, migration and eco-health.