Malaria Consortium is one of the world’s leading non-profit organisations specialising in the comprehensive prevention, control and treatment of malaria and other communicable diseases among vulnerable and under privileged populations. We increasingly find our work on malaria can be effectively integrated with other similar public health interventions for greater impact and therefore expanded our remit to include child health and neglected tropical disease interventions.
Senior Malaria Specialist
Location: Abuja, Nigeria
Role type: National
Length of contract: Five years
Reporting to: Team Leader, SUNMAP2/ Project Director
Travel involved: Up to 40%
Dotted line manager: Country Technical Coordinator
Direct reports: Market systems development specialist, Diagnostics specialist, SBCC specialist
Country and Project Background
- Malaria is highly endemic in Nigeria and it remains one of the leading causes of childhood and maternal morbidity and mortality in the country. Nigeria is deeply committed to making progress towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and it recognizes the fact that, without firm efforts to control malaria, achievement of the targets related to child mortality, maternal mortality, and reducing the burden of communicable disease will not be possible. Malaria therefore constitutes a significant development challenge for Nigeria. Interventions for reducing malaria burden in the country are documented in the national malaria strategic plan with Government taking the lead in its implementation with the support of all the RBM partners.
- The DFID funded and Malaria Consortium led malaria programme, SUNMAP, provided technical assistance and other support to the Nigeria National Malaria Elimination Programme (NMEP) covering the period 2008 to 2016. The anticipated follow on project, SUNMAP2 has been designed to strengthen the management and technical capacity of NMEP, State Malaria Elimination Programme (SMEP) and their stakeholders to drive the implementation of the National Malaria Strategic Plan, 2014 to 2020 and achieve its ambitious targets.
- This will include short term technical assistance and technical assistance embedded in NMEP in key areas of programme management, evidence generation and use, and capacity building across all project outputs and ultimately reducing Nigeria’s malaria burden and strengthening the Government of Nigeria’s health systems capacity to ensure long term programme and impact sustainability.
- The Senior Malaria Specialist will provide technical leadership on all aspects of malaria control to the project and working closely with the project team to implement evidence-based approaches to achieve the projects outcomes.
- The position holder will serve as a resource for up-to-date technical information on malaria control and elimination including providing technical support to NMEP, SMEP and other key stakeholders.
- He/She will supervise a team of three specialists and support them to implement work plans in a coherent and harmonised manner.
Scope of Work:
- Provide technical oversight for the project and take direct a lead in implementing malaria initiatives such as severe malaria case management and seasonal malaria chemoprevention (SMC).
- The position holder line manages four technical specialists.
- He/She will support the team to adapt the project strategies to their settings and see that they are revised periodically based on learnings (both internal and external to the project).
- He/She will provide technical assistance and capacity building to NMEP and SMEP especially within a paradigm of changing malaria epidemiology along the malaria elimination continuum.
- He/She will represent the programme on relevant technical working groups.
Key Working Relationships:
- The Senior Malaria Specialist will mobilise and coordinate with a broad range of stakeholders to deliver the project.
- They will work closely with the National Malaria Elimination Programme, State Malaria Elimination Programmes in the six SUNMAP2 supported states, public and private sector actors in the malaria control landscape and Malaria Consortium’s team of global technical specialists.
- Along with the Team Leader he/she will liaise periodically with DFID Nigeria. He/She will be a member of the Senior Management Team (SMT) of the project.
Key Accountabilities (Percentage level of effort)
Strategic contributions (10%):
- Contribute to development of project strategy papers, in particular those directly related to malaria prevention, diagnosis and treatment.
- Contribute to the development and improvements in the projects value-for-money approach, in particular related to effectiveness and impact optimisation.
- Lead the development and facilitate the use of a framework for technical quality improvement for the project
- Provide strategic technical support to the National Malaria Elimination Programme (NMEP), include support in the harmonisation of tools and approaches.
Technical leadership and oversight (40%):
- Provide technical support to the project’s technical team in relation to WHO’s Global Technical Strategy for malaria, the National Malaria Strategic Plan, 2014 to 2020 and the technical approaches comprising SUNMAP2.
- Oversee malaria interventions implementation from intervention design to quality assurance of implementation
- Oversee data-driven adaptation of malaria intervention implementation to achieve project output and outcome targets. This will require working closely with other teams within the project and collaboration with partners and other organisations.
- Periodically carry out statistical analysis of survey and other epidemiological data, working with the Senior MEAL Specialist in this regard.
- Provide technical support in other aspects of the project such as Surveillance and Operational Research. This includes community-based services such as integrated community case management (iCCM) and community distribution of LLINs.
- Work with the Team Leader and the Senior Health Systems Strengthening (HSS) Specialist to embed malaria control activities into the broader health systems to improve programme and impact sustainability.
- Remain abreast of technical developments in malaria control and share them with the project team and with NMEP
- Facilitate the use of data and experiential learning to inform quality improvement of project implementation and technical assistance
- Contribute to the use of information management tools such as dashboards to support decisionmakers at national and state levels to make better use of data, include data from SUNMAP2
- Line manage four technical specialists, and in so doing provide them with inspiring technical leadership
Learning, sharing and positioning (25%):
- Work with the Senior MEAL Specialist to spearhead the use of a learning agenda approach including accountability within the project and amongst key stakeholders such as NMEP and SMEP.
- Help to operationalise the learning agenda approach, results measurement and documentation
- Develop guidance documents on how malaria interventions should be implemented and monitored using the project results measurement framework. This may require checklists, SOPs or guidance instructions.
- Work with the Senior MEAL Specialist to lead the documentation of experiences and lessons learnt from the project including production of learning briefs, learning papers and general documentation (e.g. narrative reports, infographics)
- Disseminate lessons learned to national and global audiences through conference presentations, peer-reviewed publications, and technical reports
- Work with NMEP to periodically refresh the national agenda for malaria research
Technical quality and continuous improvement (10%):
- Facilitate the regular use of project and other information for technical quality improvement
- Contribute to the development and embedding of standards of malaria prevention, diagnosis and treatment
Capacity building and institutional strengthening (10%):
- Lead in building project capacity in malaria prevention, diagnosis and treatment such as writing of capacity building tools and work guidance documents.
- Organise periodic technical strategy meetings to update the project team on new developments and current trends in malaria control in Nigeria, in the region and globally.
- Work closely with long term technical assistance (LTTA) to NMEP to strengthen its institutional capacity to use evidence for decision-making and to capture learning.
- Lead capacity building efforts to strengthen both individual and institutional technical capacities within the National Malaria Elimination Programme, and State Malaria Elimination Programme (SMEP) and LGA levels working with State Malaria Service Delivery Specialist.
- In liaison with the Country Technical Coordinator and Technical Director, support capacity building initiatives of the project’s technical team and contribute to Malaria Consortium’s strategic objectives
External Representation (5%):
- Participate in national or regional technical working groups as relevant
- Make presentations at national, regional or global conferences showcasing the malaria control approaches we are using in the project
Qualifications and Experience:
- Postgraduate degree in Epidemiology or Public Health with a focus on malaria control/elimination
- At least 8 years working in technical role with an excellent understanding of malaria control/elimination approaches
- Significant experience in intervention design and implementation of large-scale malaria control projects
- Familiarity with the challenges and opportunities of malaria control Sub Saharan Africa (SSA)
- Experience in setting up standards of technical quality as well as internal quality assurance mechanisms
- Experience with value-for-money measurements
- Familiarity with the Nigerian health system
- Significant knowledge in communicable diseases control
- Experience of supporting development of learning processes and structures, ideally in an NGO context
- Experience working with private sector actors involved in malaria prevention, diagnosis and treatment
- Excellent skills in public health and or disease control, and in particular related to malaria
- Strong analytical ability
- Excellent writing and presentation skills
- Management of high performing teams, including ability to delegate efficiently and technically support teams
- Mentoring and coaching skills with respect to junior staff
- Strong skills in negotiating with and engaging Ministry of Health Officials at all levels of the health system
- Ability to work in a multicultural team
- Results-oriented attitude to work
- Excellent time management skills
- Ability to work independently with little support
- Expert competency level in reviewing, understanding and synthesising data for sharing with wider audiences
- Practical organisational skills with the ability to manage a fluctuating workload, prioritise and reprioritise when necessary and meet tight deadlines
- Able to travel to SUNMAP2 supported states for up to one week at a time to oversee implementation activities
- Attention to detail
- Problem solving mind-set
- Positive work attitude; a team player
- Excellent project management and planning skills
- Excellent statistical analysis skills including familiarity with software such as STATA, R or Statgraphics
- Demonstrable publication writing skills include peer reviewed publications
- Advocacy skills
- LEVEL D - Inspires wider teams to achieve outstanding results and to manage risks:
- Proactively improves effectiveness and performance of other senior staff to increase ability to meet objectives, acquiring new skills when appropriate
- Encourages mitigating risks amongst the teams/ groups they work with/ manage
- Ensures the quality of all internal/ external work of own and others
Analysis and use of information:
- LEVEL D - Analyses the external environment confidently:
- Generates a range of policy options and appraises them based on the internal and external evidence
- Develops ways of applying new knowledge and ensures lessonâ€ï¿½learning with self and wider team
- Analyses the significance of external events and situations for Malaria Consortium Interpersonal and communications
LEVEL C - Adapts communications effectively:
- Tailors communication (content, style and medium) to diverse audiences Communicates equally effectively at all organisational levels
- Understands others’ underlying needs, concerns and motivations and communicates effectively in sensitive situations
- Resolves intra-team and inter-team conflicts effectively
Collaboration and Partnering:
- LEVEL D - Develops external networks to increase internal thinking/ learning:
- Actively develops partnerships with relevant organisations, think tanks and individuals
- Takes initiative to establish a network or partnership where one does not exist
- Ensures any external learning is effectively brought in-house
Leading and motivating people:
- LEVEL C - Effectively leads and motivates others or direct reports:
- Gives regular, timely and appropriate feedback
- Acknowledges good performance and deals with issues concerning poor performance
- Carries out staff assessment and development activities conscientiously and effectively
- Develop the skills and competence of others through the development and application of skills
- Coaches and supports team members when they have difficulties
- LEVEL D - Clarifies priorities and ensures learning from experience:
- Clarifies priorities when leading change
- Sees and shows others the benefits of strategic change.
- Helps colleagues/ team members to practise stress management through prioritisation of workloads and modelling of appropriate self-management and care
- Makes time to learn from experience and feedback, and apply the lessons to new situations
Living the values:
- LEVEL D - Acts as a role model in promoting Malaria Consortium’s values
- Champions and takes ownership of corporate decisions, values and standards and ensures team members implement them in a positive manner
- Acts as role model internally and externally in promoting Malaria Consortium’s values
- Is accountable for ensuring that cultural awareness is demonstrated across the area (s) they manage
Strategic planning and thinking and sector awareness:
- LEVEL C - Keeps up to date with the internal and external environment:
- Takes into account economic, political and other business factors when drawing up medium and long-term plans, covering both public and private sectors
- Looks beyond the immediate operations to prospects for new business
- Engages with appropriate internal and external sources to establish major influences on future plans
Method of Application
Interested and qualified? Go to Malaria Consortium career website on recruitment.malariaconsortium.org to apply