Public Health Officer

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Application deadline 1 year ago: Sunday 19 Jun 2022 at 00:00 UTC

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This is a UNV International Specialist contract. This kind of contract is known as International UN Volunteer. It is normally internationally recruited only. More about UNV International Specialist contracts.

Zambia is experiencing a double burden of increasing prevalence of non-communicable diseases and persisting communicable diseases. The country has continued to report outbreaks of communicable diseases over the past years, including cholera, measles, circulating Vaccine Derived Poliomyelitis type 2 (cVDP2), typhoid fever and anthrax. On 11 April 2022, a cholera outbreak was declared in Zambia with its index case reported in Mtendere compound. By 18th April 2022, the outbreak had spread to other areas within Lusaka with a cumulative total of 16 suspected cases of which 8 were confirmed. On 18th March 2020, Zambia reported its first two cases of COVID-19 following global spread of the disease. The outbreak was declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern on 30th January 2020 and a Pandemic on 11th March 2020. By 27th April 2022, Zambia had reported 319,497 confirmed cases and 3,976 deaths.

Zambia also faces threats from public health events occurring in neighboring countries as well as the rest of the globe. The country is on high alert of a very high risk of importation of Ebola virus from the 14th outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo that was reported on 23rd April 2022.

As lead agency in health, WHO works closely with the Ministry of Health, other UN agencies and partners to improve the health outcomes for the people of Zambia. In its Country Cooperation Strategy, WHO Zambia Country Office identified the following five broad strategic agendas of focus: • Achieving and sustaining Universal Health Coverage (UHC) through a revitalized Primary Health Care (PHC) approach and sustainable service delivery through strengthening of health systems; • Accelerating achievement of the unfinished MDGs and SDGs relating to reduction of Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Mortality; and strengthening sexual and reproductive health; • Reducing further the burden of AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, neglected tropical diseases, hepatitis, and other communicable diseases; • Strengthening and re-orienting health and health-related systems to address the prevention and control of NCDs, including disabilities, injuries and mental health disorders, and the underlying social determinants and; • Strengthening preparedness, integrated disease surveillance and effective response to public health events/emergencies and the effective management of health-related aspects of humanitarian disasters in order to improve health security.

Drawing from lessons learnt during the 2014-2015 Ebola outbreak in West Africa, Member States at the sixty-ninth World Health Assembly in May 2016 approved establishment of the WHO Health Emergencies (WHE) program at all the three levels of the organization. The mission of the Programme is to build the capacity of Member States to manage health emergency risks and, when national capacities are overwhelmed, to lead and coordinate the international health response to contain outbreaks and to provide effective relief and recovery to affected populations. Within the WHOs 13 General Programme of Work, the WHE Program specifically supports countries to:

• Strengthen countries’ health emergency preparedness and develop national plans to address critical capacity gaps; • Develop strategies and capacities to prevent and control high-threat infectious hazards and; • Detect and rapidly respond to health emergencies.

Under the supervision of the WHO Country Representative, the UN Volunteer will undertake the following tasks:

• Support prevention, preparedness, early detection, response, and recovery activities pertaining to the COVID-19 disease outbreak; • Contribute to all aspects of prevention, preparedness, early detection, response, and recovery from other acute public health events; • Support implementation of surveillance through the components of Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response (IDSR) that include Event-Based Surveillance (EBS) Indicator-based surveillance (IBS), Community Based Surveillance and Sentinel Surveillance; • Support verification, risk assessment, monitoring and information-sharing on diseases, conditions and events that may constitute a public health emergency of international concern; • When required, participate in Field Epidemiology activities, including rapid deployment to areas affected by emergencies and outbreaks to provide technical assistance to the local or national authorities and key partners and backstop field epidemiology teams in the gathering and analysis of information for public health action using state-of-the-art technologies and/or the identification and design of suitable surveillance systems in emergencies and implement the standardized WHO Early Warning Alert and Response System (EWARS) where necessary; • Perform data entry, validation, and analyses to assist in the formulation of briefing documents and other informational materials; • Support development of communication products such as situation reports, bulletins, alerts, and other adhoc reports using standard tools and templates, and achieve results based on a multi-disciplinary and cross-cutting approach; • Participate in development and implementation of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), guidelines, tools and manuals; • Support capacity building and training of colleagues within WHO, partners and Government Republic of Zambia (GRZ) Ministries, Departments and Agencies; • Perform other related responsibilities as assigned, including replacing and back-stopping for others as required.

• Accountability • Adaptability and Flexibility • Client Orientation • Commitment and Motivation • Communication • Creativity • Ethics and Values • Integrity • Knowledge Sharing • Planning and Organizing • Professionalism • Respect for Diversity • Working in Teams

epidemiology, public health surveillance, control of outbreaks, information management, quantitative methods. • Experience in designing and implementing large databases, managing complex flows of information, implementation and interpretation of quantitative research activities; • Experience in responding to complex humanitarian crises; • Experience in WHO or UN is an asset; • Demonstrated expertise in field epidemiology, quantitative methods, surveillance in the area of emerging/re-emerging diseases in a multi-disciplinary and cross-cutting environment, as well as of database management. Proven ability to link routine health information and epidemiology to project planning, service delivery and/or pol-icy-decision making.

Zambia is a landlocked, middle-income country with a population estimated at 18 million. Lusaka became the capital city of Zambia in May 1935. Lusaka’s central position in Zambia and its pleasant climate were two of the main reasons for its selection as the capital. It is a metropolis, which provides a home to about two and half million (2.5M) inhabitants of different nationalities. It has grown to become the seat of the Government of the Republic of Zambia and as such all diplomatic missions, international organizations, industrial and commercial entities are based there. Its political, social, economic and cultural significance has also increased through the years.

Public transport is provided by private operators using minibuses and taxis. The bus routes are not mapped and roads are often congested. Good modern housing for rent is available on the open market. The official language is English, which is widely spoken. The country is generally food secure, with sufficient local fresh fruits and vegetables available in the markets, as well as various dairy, poultry and meat products. There are several international schools using the Cambridge GCSE or IGCSE syllabi, from key stage one through to A levels. Health conditions are generally good, although malaria is endemic. Zambia is generally a safe place to live in, although not free of crime. Some prudence is required. For more info, visit:

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