Updated: Oct 24, 2020
In the context of Nepal being classified as a high priority country by the WHO Health Emergencies Programme (WHE). the incumbent will be responsible for leading the provision of expert epidemiological advice and technical assistance to the member state and partners by the WHE Team of WHO Country Office (WCO) for Nepal by effective enhancement of institutional and human resources capacities and capabilities to reduce the level of risk and degree of impact of public health emergencies including epidemics and pandemics due to outbreak prone infectious diseases and mass casualty events due to non-infectious hazards through projects and programmes that lead to improved surveillance. assessment, preparation, prevention and response.
Under the overall guidance of the WHO Representative to Nepal and under the direct supervision of the Team leader - World Health Emergencies Programme (WHE) and in close coordination with other members of the WHE team of the WHO Country Office (WCO) for Nepal and WHO-SEARO and in collaboration with other teams within WCO Nepal and key external stakeholders, the Epidemiologist will perform the following:
Support the Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP) to design, deploy and strengthen public health surveillance mechanisms for the detection and verification of early warning alerts and response to verified events / incidents / emergencies of public health concern including epidemics, pandemics and AMR, ensuring efficient data collection, correlation, analysis, interpretation, timely reporting and feedback in a coordinated and harmonized manner with the existing / planned health information and e-health architecture in collaboration with internal and external teams ad partners engaged in similar initiatives.
Lead / facilitate real-time analysis of epidemic intelligence data, with other team members, for epidemic forecasting and detection, guide team members on data quality improvement, use of data for monitoring of trends, ALERT and ACTION thresholds (triggers), as well as methodologies for performing data quality audit (DQA).
Support and oversee the development and deployment of the national strategies and protocols for the conduct of risk assessments and risk communication, and surveys; and management / synthesis of the information generated from these actions, synergizing data received from multiple sources including health management information systems, civil registration systems, vertical disease control programmes, institutional (clinical and laboratory), community, event and indicator based surveillance systems to generate evidence for actionable interventions.
Contribute to the preparation and dissemination of surveillance and epidemiologic; health risk assessment and communication. situation assessment information products (surveillance and epidemiologic bulletins and reports, risk assessment reports; situation reports, health security and emergency risk management bulletins, donor reports etc).
Support coordinated establishment and efficient functioning of Epidemic Rapid Response Teams (ERRTs) as well as, Public Health Emergency Management Committees (PHEMC) at all three levels of government for confirmation and containment of potential hazards like infectious diseases, zoonotic events, food safety events and CBRN events through development and dissemination of national guidelines and standard operating protocols, advocacy interventions, capacity building strategies and tools and regular monitoring and evaluation for performance improvement.
Facilitate the development of surge management capacities in the health sector and in designated health institutions such as hub and satellite hospitals networks for the effective clinical and public health management of health emergencies due to infectious and non-infectious hazards during normalcy and following disasters.
Facilitate joint NFP-IHR / HEDMU. MoHP and WHO / Health / One-Health Sector / Cluster investigation and response interventions to epidemics. pandemics and other public health emergencies / unusual health events in Nepal as the need arises.
Support the development of a one-health oriented National Field / Applied Epidemiology Training Programme and Epidemiology and Operations Research Programme (EORP) including the elaboration of capacity building strategies. training methods and materials; supportive supervision and mentoring mechanisms for trainees; and the development of multi-sectoral partnerships for the nation-wide roll out of the National F/AETP and EORP.
Support the development and implementation of the national and provincial public health laboratory system in Nepal for enhanced epidemiologic and laboratory-based surveillance (influenza and other priority pathogens and diseases. AMR etc); effective rapid response to public health events and emergencies and efficient estimation of disease burden and trends by etiology and assess the effectiveness or disease control and public health interventions.
Strategically and operationally support the NFP-IHR and other key entities of the MoHP in building the national core capacity requirements for compliance to IHR 2005 in line with SPAR and JEE recommendations and National Action Plan on Health Security priorities.
Promote effective coordination for rapid assessment. surveillance and response activities for epidemic and pandemic prone diseases and other public health events / emergencies in consultation with Country Office. Regional Office and HQ as well as local, regional and national health entities and other international health partners including UN agencies, GOARN partners. WHO Collaborating centers and NGOs.
Supervise National Professionals and Field colleagues of the WHE team. build their epidemiologic and operations research capacity and undertake regular monitoring and evaluation including through supportive supervisory visits to the field to assess and evaluate the level and quality of their support for the implementation of prioritized activities. identify gaps and recommend corrective actions based on key performance indicators.
Lead the planning, implementation. monitoring and evaluation, technical and financial reporting of the portfolio of work assigned under the biennial operational and country support plans and seek to develop and maintain team and office wide liaisons to effectively leverage and enable country office and member state contribution to the relevant strategic objectives of the WHE team. the goals of the CCS and the Regional Flagship priorities, the WHO three billion goals and the Sustainable Development Goals.
Support the Team Lead — WHE and the WHE team to strengthen and promote partnerships and collaborations; mobilize resources; strengthen development partner / donor relationships; plan and pilot innovations and proof of concept demonstration projects; manage knowledge; document and dissimulate learning through various means.
Represent the Team Lead — WHE and the WHO Representative in platforms; forums. partnerships and events related to the portfolio of work assigned.
Assist in any other tasks as instructed by the Team Lead — WHE and the WHO Representative.
Essential: First university degree in health-related field followed by an advanced university degree (Masters level or above) in epidemiology or public health with epidemiology core from an accredited/recognized institute.
Desirable: Specialized training in communicable diseases control; risk assessment or emergency risk management would be assets.
Essential: At least five years' related experience, at the national and international levels, in quantitative epidemiology and the implementation of public health surveillance; epidemic / pandemic preparedness and response in routine and emergency/disaster settings. Previous experience in implementation of Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response (IDSR) and Field / Applied Epidemiology Programme and/or Epidemiologic / Operations Research Programme.
Desirable: Prior humanitarian working experience at field level with WHO/UN, health cluster partners, recognized humanitarian organization or with an international non-governmental organization with expertise in disaster and outbreak response
Expert knowledge of English is essential, and a working knowledge of Nepali would be an asset.
Excellent knowledge of current IT applications (MS Office or similar) and a high level of familiarity and ease in working with database, statistical and epidemiological analysis software applications.
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