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Senior TB Diagnostic Network Advisor

Closing date

 

SUSTAINING TECHNICAL AND ANALYTIC RESOURCES

FELLOWSHIP TITLE: Senior TB Diagnostic Network Advisor

HOST ORGANIZATION: National Tuberculosis and Leprosy Program, Ministry of Health (PNLT)

LOCATION: Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo

POSITION LEVEL: Senior Technical Advisor

STAR-P3-153

TRAVEL: 40% estimated travel

STAR PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

Sustaining Technical and Analytic Resources (STAR) is a project of the Public Health Institute (PHI) in partnership with the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), supported by the US Agency for International Development (USAID). STAR is a Global Health talent hub. Through fellowships, internships, and strategic partnerships, STAR supports building the capacity of diverse global health professionals and organizations at all levels to make inclusive, collaborative, and innovative contributions to global health. STAR participants collaborate in the development of systems and tools that strengthen and sustain the local and global health response. https://www.ghstar.org/ Sign up with our listserv.

ABOUT THE FELLOWSHIP

The STAR Fellowship is a global health and learning opportunity with:

  • Individualized, tailored support to enhance the fellow’s achievement personal and professional goals
  • Personalized learning plans and access to learning resources (courses, conferences, mentoring) based on fellow’s learning style and preferences.
  • Access to broad professional networks to enhance peer learning and knowledge sharing.

FELLOWSHIP OPPORTUNITY DESCRIPTION

Background:

USAID is a leader in the global fight against tuberculosis (TB) and supports anti-TB efforts in high burden TB countries. STAR Fellowship is a key component of the USAID Administrator's TB Accelerator initiative that aims to reach the UN General Assembly TB Declaration targets as well as to build the capacity and commitment of the host governments to ensure TB self-reliance through evidence-based TB programs.

Introduction:

The Senior TB Diagnostic Network Advisor’s (Senior Advisor) main goal is to focus on strengthening the diagnostic network to more accurately and efficiently detect TB and DR-TB. The Senior Advisor shall provide state-of-the-art technical expertise to support the National Tuberculosis Program (NTP) in implementing the National TB Strategic Plans (NSPs).

The Senior Advisor supports the NTP’s diagnostic network to improve quality and expansion of diagnostic testing. They will address strategic priorities and work closely with the National TB Reference Laboratory (NTRL). The Senior Advisor will support the implementation of the National TB Laboratory strategic plan and the GeneXpert (Xpert MTB Rif machines) roll-out plan and collaborates with the National Sample Transport implementing partner.

Reporting structure:

The Senior Advisor will receive technical direction from the NTP Manager within the Ministry of Health (MOH) who will serve as their Point of Contact. The Advisor will also work in close collaboration with the USAID Mission and USAID/Washington TB Team.

Responsibilities:

Enhance quality of technical assistance on diagnostic networks for the NTP

  • Provide technical support on TB diagnostic network issues including capacity building and mentorship of national, zonal and district staff in management of laboratory services, laboratory data management, and quality assurance of diagnostic testing.
  • Support MOH/Global Fund to introduce WHO recommended diagnostic technologies (e.g. GeneXpert and line probe assay) to detect drug susceptible and drug resistant TB.
  • Support the review and the implementation of the National TB Laboratory strategic plan.
  • Provide technical leadership in technical laboratory working groups and meetings with other partners.

Improve the quality and management of diagnostic networks and build the capacity of NTLP.

  • Mentors the National TB Reference Laboratory (NTRL) Laboratory Technical Officers, ensuring an environment of technical quality and innovation.
  • Maintain close communication, coordination and collaboration with the National TB Program and technical partners including facilitating NTP and lab technical working group meetings.
  • Work in close coordination with the HIV program to integrate appropriate activities and support the development of shared services.
  • In coordination with NTP team, contribute to the development and implementation of the annual work plan and outlined project activities.
  • Monitor the project performance according to the annual M&E workplan.
  • In collaboration with relevant NTP department(s), monitor the utilization and functionality of GeneXpert and other TB diagnostic platforms.

Improve nationwide coordination of knowledge management.

  • Identify areas for cross-cutting collaboration on TB diagnostic network issues with other stakeholders.
  • Identify knowledge gaps at national, zonal and district levels and initiate and guide further capacity building including implementation of new technologies.
  • Work with NTP and technical partner staff to develop journal articles, presentations, and posters to promote project work.
  • In collaboration with the NTP manager, facilitate the coordination with other partners who are supporting TB and TB/HIV laboratory strengthening activities.

Improve coordination of NTP TB diagnostic network activities with USAID Mission and partners.

  • Participate in regular NTP activities geared towards TB diagnostic network activities, including meetings, support supervision, surveys, etc.
  • Prepare periodical performance reports as required by NTP and USAID staff.
  • Submit a monitoring and evaluation and bi-annual progress reports USAID staff.
  • Participate in regular conference calls with USAID staff.
  • Provide continuous, in-country day-to-day support to the NTP on National Strategic Plan, National TB Laboratory Strategic Plan, and Global Fund grant implementation.

Anticipated learning outcomes: approximate 10% time

  • Cultivate mentorship skills based on the STAR GH mentorship curriculum to more effectively support and improve knowledge transfer and skills acquisition of staff, incoming fellows and interns.
  • Advance leadership skills to successful support capacity building and knowledge sharing activities, and mentor develop junior staff.
  • Apply leadership skills and technical expertise to support programmatic growth and scale up within TB Diagnostic Networks programming.

FELLOWSHIP REQUIREMENTS

Required:

  • DRC Citizenship required.

  • Minimum 13 years of relevant technical experience with master's degree in Medical Laboratory Sciences, microbiology, or relevant field or a minimum 15 years of relevant technical experience with bachelor's degree.

  • A minimum of 7 years of relevant TB laboratory and TB control experience.

  • Experience in strengthening laboratory networks preferably in a limited resource setting.

  • Knowledge of mycobacteriology laboratory work and network in DRC or elsewhere in Africa.

  • Experience in conducting trainings and capacity building and demonstrated facilitation skills.

  • Ability to manage a complex portfolio of laboratory network strengthening.

  • Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to work in a cross-cultural work environment.

  • Excellent written and oral communications in English.

  • Good computer skills, including familiarity with Microsoft Office programs.

  • Excellent organizational, planning, negotiating and problem-solving skills.

Additional skills (preferred)

  • Experience with GeneXpert and or other rapid TB diagnostics desired.
  • Experience working with MGIT DST and molecular Line Probe Assays desired.
  • Experience with USAID and/or PEPFAR projects is an advantage.
  • Knowledge of local culture is a plus.

How to Apply

All applicants are required to apply for this position through STAR’s online recruitment system at https://www.ghstar.org/, which allows you to store your CV/resume and separate cover letter describing your qualifications and experience, interest and familiarity with issues relating to this position, and how this position relates to your career goals is required for each application. The position will remain open until filled.