Health Emergency specialist
(Ebola Virus Disease preparedness & response)
Health Emergency Specialist (Ebola Virus Disease response)
CONTEXT AND PURPOSE FOR THE JOB
In 2018, CAR's Ministry of Health, with the support of partners, developed a National Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) Preparedness and Response plan. The plan has been approved by the government and is built upon five pillars: Inter-sectoral coordination; Surveillance and Laboratory; Infection Prevention and Control (IPC); Risk Communication and Community Engagement (RCCE). The design and implementation of the plan has been coordinated by the Public Health Emergency Operations Centre (COUSP) of the Ministry of Health, with the participation of UNICEF. UNICEF is a standing member in the Operation Center for Public Health Emergencies which is the interagency coordination body for health-related emergency. UNICEF is actively supporting the government and is involved in the coordination, RRCE, IPC and logistical pillars. On 1st June 2020, the DRC's health minister declared the 11th outbreak of Ebola in the country and the 5th in Ecuador. The current epidemic is in the health zone of Mbandaka, in the town of Mbandaka, which is home to more than one million people. The city of Mbandaka, located on the Congo River, which forms a natural border with Congo Brazzaville, is linked to both capitals and to the Central African Republic as well as to other cities in the DRC.
In the context of the COVID-19 epidemic, CAR's health capacities and resources are already stretched to the limit, placing an additional burden on the national health system. The risk of disruption to routine surveillance and public health activities as a result of COVID-19 and/or EVD could compromise the country's ability to rapidly contain the spread of the disease.
In the 2010 update of the Core Commitments for Children (CCCs) is the explicit commitment that appropriate and experienced staff and personnel with relevant deployment training are provided and rapidly deployed, that focus on action in the first eight critical weeks of humanitarian response and provide guidance for action beyond that, moving towards defined benchmarks. The UNICEF country office in CAR need the dedicate staff who can coordinate UNICEF health emergency response.
KEY FUNCTIONS, ACCOUNTABILITIES AND RELATED DUTIES
Under the guidance and supervision of the Chief of CSD section, establishes and implements country office health emergency Ebola preparedness and response. The incumbent will be responsible for the development, planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the health emergency interventions to ensure the survival and well-being of children and mothers, and the affected communities in an emergency.
The objective of the position is to support the EVD response coordination to ensure the highest level of preparedness activities in support of the Ministry of Health's (MoH) National Task Force and subsidiary bodies at the national and state levels. The health emergency specialist (EVD preparedness & response) works directly with the MoH to maximize the contribution of partners to MoH activities.
Specifically, the health emergency specialist (EVD) will:
- Continue to strengthen EVD preparedness at strategic and operational levels, by ensuring preparedness planning, prioritization, operational decision-making and information sharing between governmental representatives, UN agencies, NGOs, clusters and donors
- Support the reorganization and enhanced functioning of the National Task Force (NTF), Technical Working Groups (TWGs), and the Strategic Advisory Group (SAG)
- Support the enhancement of state-level EVD coordination structures, and their linkages to the NTF and the TWGs
- Ensure the flow of accurate and timely information to all stakeholders
- Ensure consistent outreach to development partners on resource mobilization and other partnership issues
- Manage the day-to-day work of the national coordination of EVD response
- The Emergency health specialist is the focal point of UNICEF at National task force coordination and working groups. He supports the MoH in its role of coordination with close collaboration with WHO, MSF and other actors in the preparedness & response to EVD. The focus Emergency Health specialist is on the main pillars relevant to UNICEF mandate, specifically IPC/WASH, RCCE, nutrition, education, psychosocial and social research.
- Focus EVD preparedness activities on the identified top priorities, assess progress towards these priorities and ensure priorities are reevaluated as circumstances change.
- Maximize harmonization of activities other EVD actors (WHO, MSF, etc) in support of national efforts. Support the National coordination team for high quality coordination efforts at the national and state levels, and ensure seamless transfer of information, action items and recommendations between the National and State-level Task Forces, and across the Technical Working Groups.
- Support the MoH for reconfiguration of NTF, TWGs, SAG and state-level bodies is completed quickly and effectively.
- Support the capacity building of government officials at the national and state level to coordinate and execute EVD preparedness activities according to common standards in line with the pillar supported by UNICEF.
- Participate in the organization of coordination meetings as required to ensure a consistent flow of information and coordination between STF, NTF and TWGs.
- Organize and participate to needs assessment missions.
- Support the MOH and collaborate closely with WHO to ensure an information management strategy is in place and that high-quality materials on EVD preparedness are being developed and disseminated at the national state levels.
- Resource mobilization and partnership issues
- Support the sections to develop and execute a proactive strategy for keeping donors engaged with EVD preparedness activities.
- Support the development of resource mobilization plans and funding overviews to track donor contributions and highlight EVD preparedness funding gaps.
- Ensure appropriate reporting on coordination activities
QUALIFICATIONS, SKILLS AND ATTRIBUTES
- Support coordination of UNICEF health emergency Preparedness and response to the COVID-19 outbreak and other outbreaks (measles, Ebola risk, monkey pox etc...).
- Carry out other relevant duties that may be assigned by the chief of CSD section generally and in response to unforeseen emergencies.
Advanced university degree in health, nutrition, social sciences or another related field.
Five (5) years progressively responsible professional work experience at the national and international levels in programme planning, management, monitoring, and evaluation, some of which in health emergency programme management and operations.
Fluency in French and a good level of the English.
Other skills and attributes
■ Common Technical requirements
- Knowledge of humanitarian reform principals, international humanitarian law, interconnectedness and reform pillars and reform updates
- Knowledge of Cluster approach guidelines and Cluster participants (their mandates, capacities, attitudes and limitations) and to integrate them in health emergency response
- Current knowledge of the latest developments and technology, in the field.
- Proven ability to conceptualize, develop, plan and manage programmes, as well as to impart knowledge and teach skills.
- Leadership and teamwork abilities.
- Demonstrated ability to work in a multi-cultural environment and establish harmonious and effective working relationships both within and outside the organization.
■ Function specific Technical requirements
- Ability to use and adapt cluster coordination tools (e.g. stakeholder mapping, NAF, CHAP, CERF, CAP, Flash Appeals, GAP ID, IM Tools, Need Capacity Response Mapping, contingency planning etc...
- Computer skills, including internet navigation and various office applications.