The World Health Organization (WHO) is the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations system.

It is responsible for providing leadership on global health matters, shaping the health research agenda, setting norms and standards, articulating evidence-based policy options, providing technical support to countries, and monitoring and assessing health trends.

Post: Scientist (Virologist) – (2210867)

OBJECTIVES OF THE PROGRAMME
The objectives of the immunization and vaccine development program in the SEAR are:

  • To strengthen immunization delivery systems to achieve and sustain high routine immunization coverage;
  • To eradicate polio and certify the region as being polio-free;
  • To reduce mortality due to measles by 95% by 2015 compared to year 2000 estimates;
  • To eliminate maternal and neonatal tetanus;
  • To build capacity of the national regulatory  authority in all Member States;
  • To ensure vaccine supply of assured quality;
  • To monitor adverse events following immunization and to facilitate introduction of available new and underutilized vaccines for the benefit of all people.

A well-functioning and quality laboratory service is essential to the process of certifying eradication of polio from the world and to the prevention and control of vaccine preventable diseases.

Control of vaccine preventable diseases would thus contribute to the reduction of under-five mortality and to the health and well being of all people.

DESCRIPTION OF DUTIES
• Under the overall guidance of Director, CDS and direct supervision of Coordinator (COVAX, IVD) the incumbent will carry out the following duties:

• Provide policy & strategic guidelines for measles laboratory network o support implementation of the objective pertaining to the laboratory aspects of the Strategic Framework for Measles & Rubella elimination in SEA Region2020-24.

• Provide policy & strategic guidance for polio laboratory network in South-East Asia Region in accordance with the global polio strategy 2022-26.

• Develop strategies for integration and coordination of logistic support for collection, transport of specimens, timely reporting and information flow for polio, measles/rubella, and other vaccine preventable diseases in coordination with surveillance and national program managers.

• Monitor information flow between the laboratories and program managers and strengthen laboratory data management systems and reporting formats for laboratory specimen testing results for vaccine preventable diseases.

• Advise and provide technical support to ensure laboratories are implementing the recommended WHO strategies through onsite reviews.

• Provide technical support to laboratories to meet the requirements of good laboratory practices for polio, measles/rubella and other priority vaccine preventable diseases.

• Advise the program managers and the Ministries on the laboratory activities and enlist support to address specific laboratory issues.

• Manage the conduct of accreditation review of polio and the measles/rubella laboratory network and take appropriate action to ensure high quality performance.

Assess the laboratory training needs; develop a training plan as per the requirements of the programs and the laboratories.

• Provide technical inputs in the training and capacity building of the laboratories.

• Provide orientation and training for surveillance medical officers and program managers on the laboratory aspects of testing and interpretation of results.

• Lead the development of work plan for the laboratory activities in line with the regional strategies and in coordination with technical units and HQ.

• Advise the program on specific technical aspects and guidelines to the program for other EPI activities targeted to laboratory aspects of vaccine preventable diseases.

• Manage polio containment activities through National Authority for Containment (NAC) and National Task Force (NTF) of Member countries.

• Any other duties as assigned

Candidate Profile
Education
Essential : University degree in medical or biomedical fields. Masters / Post graduate degree with specialization in virology.

Desirable : Training in molecular techniques

Experience
Essential : At least 7 years of experience including some international exposure in polio and measles/rubella virology laboratory at national and/or regional level.

Desirable : Knowledge of coordination and management of laboratory work for other vaccine preventable diseases, including diphtheria, pertussis, measles and rubella.

Skills
Expert knowledge and laboratory bench experience in at least the past ten years in either a polio and/or measles/rubella laboratory for diagnosis and/or research.

Expert knowledge in poliovirus diagnosis and using molecular technique for rapid typing of polioviruses and/or expert knowledge in measles/rubella diagnosis and using molecular technique for rapid typing of measles/rubella viruses in support of polio eradication and/or measles/rubella elimination initiatives.

Thorough knowledge of clinical and laboratory surveillance and previous experience and understanding of VPDs and work-related experience in developing countries and management of a national laboratory or network of laboratories.

Knowledge of diagnosis of communicable diseases control and epidemiology and ability to work with national and international staff as member of the IVD polio eradication team both in the laboratory setting as well as the international advisory and support levels.

Previous experience and understanding of VPD diseases and work-related experience in developing countries. Proven track record of successfully acting as an international adviser or consultant.

REMUNERATION
WHO salaries for staff in the Professional category are calculated in US dollars.

The remuneration for the above position comprises an annual base salary starting at USD 90,664 (subject to mandatory deductions for pension contributions and health insurance, as applicable), a variable post adjustment, which reflects the cost of living in a particular duty station, and currently amounts to USD 2697 per month for the duty station indicated above.

Other benefits include 30 days of annual leave, allowances for dependent family members, home leave, and an education grant for dependent children.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
• Please note applications should be submitted through WHO’s online recruitment portal. Please visit who.int/careers to complete an online profile and to apply to this vacancy.

• A written test may be used as a form of screening.

• The written test for shortlisted candidates will tentatively be held in week starting 30 January 2023. Candidates are advised to make themselves available during that period

• This vacancy notice may be used to fill other similar positions at the same grade level

• Only candidates under serious consideration will be contacted.

• A written test may be used as a form of screening.

• In the event that your candidature is retained for an interview, you will be required to provide, in advance, a scanned copy of the degree(s)/diploma(s)/certificate(s) required for this position.

WHO only considers higher educational qualifications obtained from an institution accredited/recognized in the World Higher Education Database (WHED), a list updated by the International Association of Universities (IAU)/United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

The list can be accessed through the link: whed.net/. Some professional certificates may not appear in the WHED and will require individual review.

• Any appointment/extension of appointment is subject to WHO Staff Regulations, Staff Rules and Manual.

• Staff members in other duty stations are encouraged to apply.

• For information on WHO’s operations please visit:  who.int.

• WHO is committed to workforce diversity.

• WHO prides itself on a workforce that adheres to the highest ethical and professional standards and that is committed to put the WHO Values Charter into practice.

• WHO has zero tolerance towards sexual exploitation and abuse (SEA), sexual harassment and other types of abusive conduct (i.e., discrimination, abuse of authority and harassment).

All members of the WHO workforce have a role to play in promoting a safe and respectful workplace and should report to WHO any actual or suspected cases of SEA, sexual harassment and other types of abusive conduct.

To ensure that individuals with a substantiated history of SEA, sexual harassment or other types of abusive conduct are not hired by the Organization, WHO will conduct a background verification of final candidates.

• WHO has a smoke-free environment and does not recruit smokers or users of any form of tobacco.

• WHO has a mobility policy which can be found at the following link: http://www.who.int/employment/en/. Candidates appointed to an international post with WHO are subject to mobility and may be assigned to any activity or duty station of the Organization throughout the world.

Applications from women and from nationals of non and underrepresented Member States are particularly encouraged.

Location: India-New Delhi

Last Date: Dec 30, 2022, 4:29:00 AM