South Africa


University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN)

The University is made up of four Colleges (Agriculture, Engineering and Science, Humanities, Law and Management Studies, and Health Sciences) housed in five campuses across the province of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa.

The UKZN has a strong research ethos, especially in Infectious Diseases with several research institutes including CAPRISA (Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa), KRISP (Kwazulu-Natal Research Innovation and Sequencing Platform) and the HIV Pathogenesis Programme.

The Fractures E³ study is housed in the departments of Geriatrics and Rheumatology, in School of Clinical Medicine, College of Health Science situated in the Nelson R Mandela/Medical School campus in Durban. Both departments have a strong clinical and research interest in osteoporosis and hip fractures




South African Team


Professor Bilkish Cassim

Principal Investigator – Associate Professor/Chief Specialist and Head of Geriatrics at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central Hospital in Durban, South Africa.  Prof Cassim has both a clinical and research interest in osteoporosis and is an executive member of the National Osteoporosis Foundation of South Africa. 


Dr Farhanah Paruk

Deputy, South Africa Specialist rheumatologist based in Kwazulu-Natal. Dr Paruk is also an executive member of National Osteoporosis Foundation of South Africa.



Professor Mkhululi (Mac) Lukhele

Orthopaedic expert Adjunct Professor of Orthopaedics University of Witwatersrand. Orthopaedic Spine Surgeon and researcher.



Nelly Ndlovu

Study Co-ordinator – Nelly is a qualified development officer, experienced clinical researcher and project coordinator. Hons degree in Public Policy & Development Studies & junior degree in Community & Development Studies from the University of KZN. Experienced in project management and coordination, particularly public health projects.

Fundile Habana

Data Manager – Fundile Habana holds an N Certificate in Information Technology, Software and Hardware Concepts, Administration & Bookkeeping.  He is highly experienced in data entry, management, and analysis of data in clinical studies. His previous work experience includes being a senior administrative assistant, data capture & analysis, & tutor.

Sisanda Mgunculu

Fieldworker – Sisanda holds an honors bachelor degree in Psychology with vast experience working on community-based projects supervising the facilitation of various Psycho-Social Intervention programs in the most vulnerable communities. A significant amount of these years were spent in the Mental Health Research environment as senior research assistant.

Silindile Khuzwayo

Fieldworker WP1 – Silindile has 4 years experience in public health research, working for companies like Epicentre Public Health Research and Human Sciences Research Council as a fieldworker and as a HIV counsellor.


Sabelo Ndlovu

Fieldworker – Sabelo is an active member of the Vulindlea community, leading stakeholders engagements with various community leaders and traditional authority houses. He has worked for the HSRC as a fieldworker/ Data collector and for the University of Kwazulu Natal as a community liaison officer.

Zethu Sithole

Research Nurse – Zethu is a qualified registered nurse with primary health care and research experience. She was involved in TB trials (MRC), IRIS study (UKZN), COVID19 Readiness (IHPS).


Nonkululeko Sibiya

Fieldworker – Nonkululeko is an enrolled nurse auxiliary, her experience includes working for Epicentre Health Research company as a data collector, fieldworker, and data capture.



Dolly Zondi

Research Nurse WP1 – Sr Dolly’s passion is research, and keeping her communities informed and healthy.



Amanda Mwelase

Ethnographer WP5 – Amanda is a Researcher with a Masters in Research Psychology, with an interest in medical, health and social science research. She is currently based in Gauteng.


Keabetswe Khutsoane

Qualitative Researcher WP5 – Kea is a researcher and transformation specialist that has dedicated both her educational and professional career to social justice issues.