Procedures and Eligibility Before submitting an application, UNHCR staff members intending to apply to this Job Opening are requested to consult the Recruitment and Assignments Policy (RAP, UNHCR/HCP/2017/2 and the Recruitment and Assignments Administrative Instruction (RAAI), UNHCR/AI/2017/7 OF 15 August 2017.
Duties and Qualifications
Organizational Setting and 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 and embassies/donors.
The Public Health Officer should also ensure consultation with communities seeking the diverse views of men, women, girls and boys, adolescents, youth, older persons, LGBTI 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.
The Public Health Officer is normally supervised by a Senior Operations/ Assistant Representative (Operations) unless supervised by a Senior Public Health Officer. The incumbent has a functional line with the Public Health Section in Geneva regarding authoritative guidance and support in technical matters and is expected to maintain regular contact with the PHS and the Regional Bureau. All UNHCR staff members are accountable to perform their duties as reflected in their job description. They do so within their delegated authorities, in line with the regulatory framework of UNHCR which includes the UN Charter, UN Staff Regulations and Rules, UNHCR Policies and Administrative Instructions as well as relevant accountability frameworks. In addition, staff members are required to discharge their responsibilities in a manner consistent with the core, functional, cross-functional and managerial competencies and UNHCR’s core values of professionalism, integrity and respect for diversity.
Coordination, Leadership and Partnership
– 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.
– Support the Operation to define the level and scope of UNHCR’s involvement in public health and nutrition responses in terms of overall and operational objectives during emergency situations and beyond.
– 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.
– 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.
– 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.
-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.
– 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).
– 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.
Strategic planning and development
– Contribute to development and/or implementation and monitoring of UNHCR’s Strategic Plan for Public Health and adaptation at country level.
– 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.
– 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.
– 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.
– 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.
– 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.
– 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).
– 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. Technical integrity and risk mitigation
– Update and disseminate standard practices on public health, MHPSS, nutrition, HIV and reproductive health among partners. – Support the prioritization of primary health care (including preventive, promotive, curative, rehabilitative and palliative care)
– 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.
– 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.
– 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.