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Senior National TB Reference Laboratory Advisor
|Location :||Juba, SOUTH SUDAN|
|Application Deadline :||03-Jun-22 (Midnight New York, USA)|
|Additional Category :||HIV, Health and Development|
|Type of Contract :||Individual Contract|
|Post Level :||International Consultant|
|Languages Required :||English|
|Starting Date :|
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
|Duration of Initial Contract :||3 Months|
|Expected Duration of Assignment :||3 Months|
UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.
UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.
The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) is a key partner to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM) and is the United Nations (UN) agency assuming the role of Principal Recipient of GFATM grants in selected countries. In its role as Principal Recipient, UNDP is responsible for the financial and programmatic management of the GFATM grant as well as for the procurement of health and non-health products. In all areas of implementation, UNDP provides capacity development services to the implementing partners; government counterparts and sub-recipients (SRs).
The UNDP South Sudan Programme signed the COVID-19 Response Mechanism award with the Global Fund on behalf of the Country Coordinating Mechanism-CCM of the Government of South Sudan-GoSS. The project runs until 31 December 2023 with key areas of support including country coordination and planning for COVID-19 response, risk communication and community engagement, infection prevention and control, COVID-19 diagnostics and lab systems strengthening, health products management and waste management, surveillance and surveillance
systems strengthening, and last mile delivery. COVID-19 response in the country is led nationally by the National Taskforce and advised by the National Steering Committee which is comprised of several Technical Working Groups along WHO’s pillars for COVID-19 response. The country has also revised its national strategic preparedness and response plan the implementation of which is being supported through this award and other partners. UNDP is the principal recipient of the award and is partnering with sub-recipients to implement the various pillars of the national response.
One of the focus areas of this award are laboratory systems strengthening that focus on the integration of diagnostic services and the strengthening of the national public health laboratory (NPHL). The capacity of the NPHL for COVID-19 and TB advanced diagnosis and quality assurance is severely compromised as a result of lack of adequate hands-on technical support. UNDP is, thereofe, seeking a one-year expertise technical assistance that will be provided to the NPHL in order that the NPHL is in full capacity to run the National TB Reference Laboratory (NTRL) and COVID-19 laboratory.
Objectives of the ToR
The UNDP South Sudan through the Global Fund COVID-19 response mechanism award intends to contract a Senior laboratory expert with solid TB reference laboratory work background to ensure that capacity is built at the NTRL and that COVID-19 laboratory is fully functional to provide both advanced diagnostic testing and execute quality assurance.
Duties and Responsibilities
Purpose of the Assignment
The main objective of this technical assistance is to provide hands-on training, mentoring and support to the day-to-day operation of the NTRL and oversee the operation of COVID-19 laboratory.
Scope of work
The senior laboratory specialist will focus on strengthening the TB reference laboratory at the NPHL and the COVID-19 laboratory and its diagnostics network and build on previous Global Fund investments and activities for improved TB and COVID-19 diagnostics including multi-drug resistant (MDR) TB, and COVID-19 diagnostic activities. With the focus on those activities, the technical assistance is intended to achieve three key results:
The Senior Laboratory Specialist has the following deliverables:
NTRL staff trained on National TB Reference Laboratory (NTRL) work processes: Hands-on training for the NTRL staff on TB reference laboratory work process including culture and DST conducted
External quality assurance (EQA) for TB laboratory tests in the country fully carried out for the quarter and feedback provided to the peripheral laboratories
Multi-disease diagnostic network in the country assessed and action plan for improvement developed.
The NTRL is made fully functional – with TB culture, GeneXpert, EQA services running smoothly.
Site supportive supervision for peripheral laboratories is adequately planned and coordinated.
Required Skills and Experience
Advanced level (Master’s degree or above) in Microbiology, infectious diseases, Laboratory Medicine, Molecular Biology or related At least 7 years of experience working in a national TB reference laboratory
At least 7+ years of progressive professional experience in TB-focused diagnostic strengthening and capacity
Excellent oral and written English. Advanced level (Master’s degree or above) in Microbiology, infectious diseases, Laboratory Medicine, Molecular Biology or related