Work from Harare, Zimbabwe as a Consultants Immunization and Surveillance Officers

jobsnearmeafric World Health Organization


Contractual Arrangement : External consultant

Contract Duration (Years, Months, Days) : 6 months

1.1. Purpose of the Position:

In the context of the need to respond to Polio virus outbreak in Zimbabwe, the consultant will support comprehensive outbreak response including Polio Supplementary Immunization Activities (SIA), enhanced Polio surveillance and strengthened routine immunization to interrupt the transmission of Polio and prevent mortality, morbidity and disability from Polio. The consultant will support vaccination campaigns, Integrated Vaccine Preventable Diseases (VPDs) surveillance, documentation of achievements, best practices and challenges.

3.2 Background:

Zimbabwe has reported circulating Vaccine Derived Poliovirus type 2 (cVDPV2) Outbreak detected through Environmental Surveillance (ES) at 3 sites in Harare City. The first isolate was on 25 August 2023. This was not immediately classified as cVDPV2 since there was no genetic sequencing linkage with any other Polioviruses at the time. Subsequent results received on 20 October 2023 confirmed cVDPV2, will all isolates linked to the initial isolate on 25/08/2023. Seven (7) isolates of cVDPV2 have been reported to date.

The outbreak has been Graded as Grade 2, based on high risk of local and international spread and availability of capacity to respond.

The country has initiated response to the outbreak. The main response actions are:

 Supplementary Immunization Activities using the Novel Oral Polio Vaccine Type 2 (nOPV2) 
 Strengthened routine immunization
 Strengthened Acute Flaccid Paralysis surveillance including intensification of active searches
 Expansion of Environmental Surveillance to five other sites
 Building country capacity for local laboratory processing of Environmental Surveillance samples.
2. Assigned/expected duties/work to be performed:

Reporting to the WHO Representative, and under the overall guidance of the EPI team lead and the UHC LC lead, the consultant will provide support to the WHO Country Office (WCO), the Ministry of Health and Child Care and partners towards the comprehensive response to the cVDPV2 outbreak.

4.1 Outputs:

a. Support planning, preparations, implementation and monitoring of two rounds of Supplementary Immunization Activities using the Novel Oral Polio Vaccine Type 2 (nOPV2)

b. Support planning and implementation of immunization recovery strategies

c. Ensure strengthened Acute Flaccid Paralysis surveillance including intensification of active searches

d. Facilitate expansion of Environmental Surveillance to five other sites

4.2 Deliverables:

a. nOPV2 SIA microplans

b. nOPV2 Supplementary Immunization Activities reports

c. Monthly routine immunization performance reports

d. VPDs surveillance performance reports including weekly Polio bulletin

5 Technical supervision

a. The WHO Representative

b. The UHC LC lead

c. The EPI team lead

6 Recruitment profile

6.1 Language:

a. Fluency in written and spoken English

b. Another UN language would be an added advantage

6.2 Education:

a. Essential: First level university degree in nursing, medicine, epidemiology, or public health from an accredited/recognized institute.

b. Desirable: Advanced university degree in nursing, public health, or health related field.

6.3 Experience:

a. At least five years’ related experience, at the national and/or international levels, in the field of immunization and vaccines, especially in humanitarian settings.

b. Prior humanitarian working experience at field level with WHO, other UN agencies, health cluster partners, recognized humanitarian organizations or with an international nongovernmental organization with expertise in disaster and outbreak response.

6.4 Skills and competencies

a. Demonstrated knowledge of immunization and vaccines systems as related to emergency response relief operations.

b. Proven ability to multitask across various planning and implementation processes within a highly demanding environment.

c. Excellent knowledge of Microsoft Office applications.

d. Working knowledge of online data collection applications, statistical analysis packages (Stata, SPSS, etc).

e. Working knowledge of GIS mapping software (or similar) would be an asset.

7 Place of assignment

Incumbent will be based in Harare at the WHO Country Office with travel to the provinces and districts of the country as required.

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