The Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) will be rolling out an antiretroviral (ARV) treatment programme for students at its Bellville campus, it has said.

The other three main campuses of the Western Cape institution in District Six, Mowbray and Wellington is set to implement the programme in 2020.

The acting head of department at CPUT's health department, Andries Slinger, said all registered students in Cape Town and elsewhere in the country would have access to the service for free. 

"Our structured support programme will ensure that they [the students] will have at least a two-month supply of ARVs at hand when on holiday or at home," added Slinger.

The move comes after the adoption of a memorandum of understanding between the Western Cape health department, Tygerberg substructure and the university. 

Clinical nurse practitioners Avril Sampson and Gail Benjamin successfully completed the nurse-initiated management of the ARV course offered by the health department and NGO Kethimpilo.

The department accredited the CPUT student health clinic as a decanting site where life-saving antiretroviral medication may be rolled out.

Each individual would be treated on a case by case basis, according to Slinger.

He added that counselling would be made available as it was an "integral part of HIV/AIDS management with respect to acceptance of the condition, destigmatization and [in] addressing possible discriminatory practices of the disease".

"The student health clinic complies with the statutory regulations in terms of health care," said Slinger.

Students from all campuses will participate in a structured support programme and access their treatment at campus clinic level.

"This support programme will ensure that HIV positive students are managed and cared for locally," added Slinger. 

"They won’t miss out on class time due to waiting hours at off-site clinics, and adherence to the medication will thus improve."