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Public Health Officer, Hargeisa, Somalia


Hardship Level (not applicable for home-based): E (most hardship)

Family Type (not applicable for home-based): Non Family with Residential Location

Staff Member / Affiliate Type: UNOPS IICA2

Target Start Date: 2023-09-01

Job Posting End Date: June 4, 2023

Terms of Reference

The incumbent will report to the Head of Sub Office Hargeisa, working closely and in collaboration with Programme and Protection Sections in the Operation. Have international work experiences in similar context, and a good knowledge of the Somalia Public Health system.

1. General Background Operational Context in Somalia The operational context in Somalia remains complex: In addition to the conflict that has lasted for decades, Somalia had to contend with floods, locust infestations, COVID-19 pandemic, insecurity leading to populations displacement as well as the current political situation and delayed elections. The security situation in the country remained volatile with regular attacks against military bases, as well as civilians. Most of the Somali population lost their livelihoods and have serious trouble meeting their basic household needs.

UNHCR Operations in Somalia: Despite security challenges, UNHCR continues to provide protection and assistance to its persons of concern (PoCs), including refugees, asylum-seekers, refugee returnees, and IDPs across the country – directly and through partners. Displaced families are in dire need of food, shelter, and Non-Food Items (NFIs), and are faced with multiple protection risks. Directly and through the UNHCR-led clusters, UNHCR continued to respond to the immediate needs of the families. UNHCR leads the protection and shelter clusters and co-led the CCCM cluster and works with international and national NGO partners in delivering protection and assistance to refugees and asylum seekers from Ethiopia, refugees from Yemen, internally displaced persons, and Somali refugees returnees. The operation in Somaliland and in Puntland is also involved in Mixed Migration movements. The main area of focus for UNHCR in Somalia includes: – Support to basic needs and life-saving assistance such as subsistence cash grants provided based on vulnerability criteria, – Health, education, GBV, and legal counselling and very minimum protection-related resettlement, – Empowering the communities by supporting community management structures and engaging government in line with CRRF and the Global Compact on Refugees, – Return and reintegration cash grant for Somali refugee returnees arriving in Somalia, – Community-based co-existence projects in key return areas include rehabilitation of public facilities to promote and enhance access to basic services and reduce the burden in existing facilities, etc.

Access to health services: Since there are no organized refugee camps, UNHCR works in partnerships with public and private for nonprofit health facilities (Health centers and hospitals) to ensure that above mentioned PoCs have access to primary and secondary/tertiary level health care services at the same level as nationals. UNHCR works with health partners that have agreements with selected facilities to attend to PoCs in need of medical assistance. Referral system in place in all locations. UNHCR has developed a 2-years Public Health Strategy focusing on access to essential health services of sufficient quality; supporting National health systems to meet the health needs of refugees and host communities; Strengthening cross-sectoral collaboration within UNHCR and with external partners and engaging communities in activities to promote and sustain their health. And recently developed a Medical Referral Care SOPs.

2. Purpose and Scope of Assignment It is with this background that UNHCR is looking for experienced Public Health Expert to work within the UNHCR’s Multifunctional Team to support health-related protection and assistance objectives of operations in Somalia. The incumbent will perform under the direct supervision of the Head of Sub Office Hargeisa and will benefit from technical supervision and support from the Senior Regional Public Health Officer at the Regional Bureau in Nairobi.

Work Relationships The Public Health Officer is a member of a multidisciplinary team and will ensure that UNHCR’s public health programmes meet minimum UNHCR and global health standards in order to minimise avoidable morbidity and mortality among populations of concern (POC) and towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The incumbent provides strong and timely technical guidance to UNHCR senior management and partners including on the design and scope of UNHCR’s responses in health and nutrition, catalyses the engagement of other actors, supports resource mobilisation efforts, including with the private sector, and monitors the response. S/he has close contacts with internal and external stakeholders such as government counterparts, UN Agencies, NGOs and embassies/donors. The incumbent should also ensure consultation with communities, seeking the diverse views of men, women, girls and boys, adolescents, youth, older persons, persons with disabilities, including people with psychosocial and intellectual disabilities, in assessing needs, designing, implementing and monitoring responses in line with UNHCR’s policy on age, gender and diversity mainstreaming. Public Health programmes include primary health care, secondary health care, community health, reproductive health (including HIV), nutrition, MHPSS and health information systems. In addition to public health staff, major operations may also have dedicated staff focusing on any of these components, but public health officers are expected to be very conversant with reproductive health programming and ensure that minimum standards are met. Depending on the size of the operation the incumbent may be expected to have major responsibilities for nutrition and MHPSS responses. The Public Health Officer will work with the (Senior) Programme Officer (or other designated staff member) to support operational collaboration and joint programming with WFP on nutrition and food security.

Detailed scope of assignments include: \u27a2 Coordination, Leadership and Partnership \u2022 In line with the Global Compact on Refugees work with governments, humanitarian and development partners to ensure a whole-of-government (i.e. relevant national and local authorities for health and nutrition response) multi-stakeholder approach and planning to harness the comparative advantages of different partners to meet the health needs of POC. \u2022 Represent UNHCR in public health coordination and other meetings including relevant inter-sectoral groups such as Technical Working Groups (TWGs) for MHPSS and nutrition, reproductive health, community health, among others. \u2022 Engage in relevant partnership fora, including in line with UNHCR’s role as a UNAIDS co-sponsor of the Joint Programme on AIDS and co-lead with WFP of the Division of Labour area of HIV in Humanitarian Settings. \u2022 Support operational collaboration with WFP including the implementation of Joint Assessment Missions and corresponding Joint Plans of Action in line with global commitments on targeting of assistance to meet basic needs and data sharing to support assistance distribution (in collaboration with programme and protection colleagues). \u2022 Support robust and timely emergency responses to new refugee influxes or disease outbreaks or other public health-related emergencies in line with UNHCR’s Public Health Emergency Toolkit, Emergency Handbook and the SPHERE Handbook. \u2022 Support the Operation’s engagement in the public health-related aspects of contributions of major donors to refugee responses, including the World Bank, taking part in assessments, design of projects, monitoring and evaluation. \u2022 Co-ordinate public health, reproductive health, nutrition and HIV activities in support of the government’s responses and in conjunction with other UN agencies, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and other partners, including development actors to ensure delivery of public health and nutrition services to beneficiaries (POC and host community) meet UNHCR and /or nationally recognised and most up-to-date standards and policies. \u27a2 Strategic planning and development \u2022 Contribute to development and/or implementation and monitoring of UNHCR’s Strategic Plan for Public Health and adaptation at country level. \u2022 Work with stakeholders, including Ministries of Health, UN agencies, NGOs, academic institutions, POC and other relevant partners in the development of public health preparedness and response plans associated with refugee movements (including in repatriation programmes). \u2022 Work with others in UNHCR to advocate for refugees, returnees and other POC’s access to local public health, reproductive health (RH) and HIV, MHPSS, nutrition (including food assistance where relevant) and water and sanitation services and lobby for inclusion of refugees, returnees and other POC as a specific group in government policies and plans related to health, RH and HIV as well as major donor programmes such as the Global Fund for HIV, TB and Malaria. \u2022 Provide guidance and make recommendations on the overall strategy and focus of public health and nutrition programmes within the Area of Responsibility (AOR), including ensuring public health strategic approaches are developed in a multi-sectoral and co-ordinated manner in co-operation with government, UN agencies, NGOs and other humanitarian partners with due consideration to the approaches outlined in the Global Compact on Refugees and in support of the Sustainable Development Goals, including SDG3. \u2022 Provide up-to date assessment and identification of needs for public health strategies, recognise and support the contributions of governments and other actors align with and support national health system as much as possible; include curative, preventive, promotive, rehabilitative and palliative care; recognise the different approaches required for the stage of the humanitarian response (preparedness, emergency, stabilisation and longer term inclusion) as well as for settlement or camp-based POC and those in urban or non-camp situations. \u2022 Contribute to public health strategies addressing known gaps in health and nutrition programming based on country/field-specific needs assessments with due consideration to neonatal and maternal health care, TB, HIV and viral hepatitis, non-communicable diseases including mental health, palliative care, health services for LGBTI individuals, health and protection services for persons selling sex and programming for persons with disabilities including access to assistive technologies and appropriate associated services, adolescents and the elderly. \u2022 Support the development and monitoring of country specific medium to long term inclusion plans in support of the Ministry of Health and other relevant Ministries (e.g. Social Welfare) and in partnership with development and other actors. \u2022 Maintain and update contingency/ preparedness and response plans within the AOR for potential public health events including disease outbreaks and public health aspects of refugee and returnee movements. \u27a2 Technical integrity and risk mitigation \u2022 Update and disseminate standard practices on public health, MHPSS, nutrition, HIV and reproductive health among partners. \u2022 Support the prioritization of primary health care (including preventive, promotive, curative, rehabilitative and palliative care) \u2022 Ensure, in close co-ordination with other humanitarian actors, that health care services provided to POC are based on Ministry of Health, UNHCR and/or internationally recognized and most up-to-date standards and policies. \u2022 Establish and/or adapt UNHCR internal operating procedures to ensure they are in line with UNHCR and/or international standards and improve efficiency of programme activities; this includes – but is not limited to – referral health care, medicines and medical supplies procurement and management, medical resettlement and resettlement of persons with health needs, cash-based assistance for health care coverage and referral between units and inter-sectoral collaboration. \u2022 Monitor and support compliance with, and integrity of, all Public Health standard operating procedures in conjunction with Project Control and Programme staff and in line with delegated authorities, including flagging to senior managers when these are not in line with global guidance or not being followed. \u27a2 Collaboration \u2022 Work closely with UNHCR programme, technical, field and protection staff to identify priority health issues and key data requirements for programme planning and monitoring to ensure that minimum UNHCR and international standards are being met. \u2022 Support linkages of public health to WASH programmes throughout all stages of the programme cycle including in outbreak preparedness and response, emergency responses to refugee influxes, WASH in health facilities, community health education and menstrual hygiene management. \u2022 Support inter-sector collaboration throughout all stages of programme cycle between public health and nutrition with WASH, education, energy, environment, shelter, and protection in order to promote synergies and maximise impact. \u2022 Participate in the review and analysis of relevant project proposals and budgetary submissions presented by UNHCR partners within the context of the UNHCR programming cycle. \u2022 Ensure that project plans or proposals submitted to UNHCR for funding adhere to internationally accepted standards, and are based on a comprehensive PHC strategy, rights based and meet the needs of vulnerable persons. \u2022 Ensure consultation with communities seeking the diverse views of men, women, girls and boys, adolescents, youth, older persons, persons with disabilities and LGBTQI in assessing needs, designing, implementing and monitoring responses in line with UNHCR’s policy on age, gender and diversity mainstreaming. \u2022 Ensure implementation of the UNHCR Health Information System and other relevant data collection tools including the balanced scorecard, maternal and neonatal death audits, Health Access and Utilisation Survey and other corporate tools where relevant; support the analysis, interpretation, dissemination and use of public health data. \u2022 Advocate for the inclusion of refugees and other POC in national surveys such as demographic and health surveys, multi-indicator cluster surveys, AIDS indicator surveys including where possible a separate sample/oversampling to include refugees thus allowing for comparisons and trend analysis over time. \u2022 Support national health systems to disaggregate data by refugee and nationals in key areas based on country specific needs in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. \u2022 Monitor public health and nutrition programmes against standard UNHCR and international indicators, to ensure that programmes are evidence-based and implemented in a comprehensive, cost-effective and efficient manner. \u2022 Support the planning, implementation, analysis, dissemination and use of nutritional surveys (Standardized Expanded Nutrition Surveys, SENS), health-related surveys and post-distribution monitoring exercises (in collaboration with WFP). \u2022 Promote applied research and programme evaluation to enable the identification of gaps in programme implementation and standards, and to further promote evidence-based activities and guidance. \u2022 In line with policies for Accountability to Affected Populations (AAP) ensure POC have access to feedback and accountability mechanisms relating to public health and nutrition services including the collection and analysis of data on their satisfaction with regards to public health and nutrition services. \u2022 Prepare regular sectoral reports and submit material for preparation of periodic project monitoring reports as required by the office at country level. \u2022 Ensure adequate and accurate reporting, timely updates and briefings to donors and management. \u27a2 Capacity Building \u2022 Support capacity strengthening of UNHCR and its implementing partners to address public health, nutrition, reproductive health, HIV, MHPSS programming in a co-ordinated, multi-sectoral way and disseminate relevant guidelines and information materials. \u2022 Undertake and/or support capacity building needs assessments of UNHCR staff and partners and develop approaches to address capacity gaps including identifying internal and external training opportunities. \u2022 In conjunction with the Public Health Section in HQ, Global Learning and Development Centre, bureaux and external actors support development of capacity strengthening tools and materials including webinars, e-learning materials and online learning tools and contribute to relevant communities of practices. \u2022 Plan, organise, facilitate and participate in workshops in conjunction with Bureaux, Public Health Section in HQ, Global Learning and Development Centre and external actors. \u2022 Perform other related duties as required.

3. Monitoring and Progress Controls (Clear description of measurable outputs, milestones, key performance indicators and/or reporting requirements which will enable performance monitoring) \u2022 Ensure implementation of the UNHCR Health Information System and support the analysis of public health data. \u2022 Active involvement in all aspects of programme monitoring with a main emphasis on checking levels of implementation and impact vis-\u00e0-vis resource inputs to measure cost-effectiveness and re-orient the programme as appropriate. \u2022 Ensure the monitoring of health and nutrition programmes against standard UNHCR and international indicators, to ensure that programmes are evidence-based and implemented in a comprehensive and cost-effective manner. \u2022 Monitor technical aspects of the health and nutrition programme with emphasis on: 1. Application of standard guidelines and protocols. 2. Comprehensiveness of health and nutrition programme. 3. Apply various mechanisms and tools to ensure proper monitoring including: \u2022 Regular flow of information (reporting); \u2022 Conventional/non-conventional surveys and evaluation studies. Meeting with health implementing partners; \u2022 Data analysis and interpretation. \u2022 Implementation and use of standard Balanced scorecards, to monitor health program and inform decision making. \u2022 Ensure quality and timely inputs to global reports such as the UNHCR Annual Public Health Report and the Joint Programme Monitoring System report for UNAIDS. \u2022 In coordination with MoH team, UNHCR field offices and Community Based Protection, ensure timely reporting of COVID-19 cases and vaccination among refugee population, and update the line list and other reporting tools on vaccination. \u2022 Submit COVID-19 sitreps including caseload and vaccination.

4. Qualifications and Experience (List the required education, work experience, expertise and competencies of the individual contractor. The listed education and experience should correspond with the level at which the contract is offered.) a. Education (Level and area of required and/or preferred education) \u2022 Minimum 6 years relevant experience with Undergraduate degree; or 5 years relevant experience with Graduate degree; or 4 years relevant experience with Doctorate degree \u2022 Field(s) of Education \u2013 Medicine, Medical Service, Medical Director, Nursing, Public Health or other relevant field. \u2022 Desirable Certifications and/ or Licences – Epidemiology b. Work Experience Essential Knowledge of public health, reproductive health and nutrition in humanitarian situations. Exposure to UNHCR mandate, its priorities and principles. Good communicator with strong interpersonal and negotiations skills. Desirable Additional qualifications in Nutrition and WASH and a thorough understanding of the linkages with public health and food security. Ability to coordinate a range of diverse actors and activities to achieve a common objective in the area of Public Health. c. Key Competencies \u2022 Analytical and report writing skills \u2022 Ability to coordinate a range of diverse actors and activities in a short timeframe. \u2022 Ability to organize and conduct formal and informal workshops/meetings for actors and stakeholders \u2022 Good communicator with strong interpersonal and negotiation skills to deal with different country contexts with persons of diverse cultural backgrounds \u2022 Strive to live up to high ethical and professional standards. \u2022 Team player with service-oriented attitudes \u2022 Ability for analysis of complex issues for the development of new methods/approaches requiring the identification and in-depth examination of numerous technical factors to provide solutions.Functional Skills \u2022 MS-Monitoring & Evaluation \u2022 PG-Monitoring Programmes/Projects \u2022 MD-Public Health Epidemiology \u2022 MD-Experience with HIV/AIDS situations \u2022 MD-Reproductive Health \u2022 MD-Community Health – Health Data Collection/Analysis/Interpretation \u2022 CO-Strategic Communication \u2022 UN-UNHCR’s Mandate/Policy and Global Strategic Priorities \u2022 EX-Experience in complex field emergencies Language Requirements \u2022 Knowledge of English and UN working language of the duty station if not English. \u2022 Knowledge of Somali is an asset Competency Requirements Core Competencies \u2022 Accountability \u2022 Communication \u2022 Organizational Awareness \u2022 Teamwork & Collaboration \u2022 Commitment to Continuous Learning \u2022 Client & Result Orientation Managerial Competencies \u2022 Empowering and Building Trust Cross-Functional Competencies \u2022 Analytical Thinking \u2022 Planning and Organizing \u2022 Stakeholder Management

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Additional Qualifications: Skills



Work Experience

Other information: This position doesn’t require a functional clearance