Head of Project (NCD Moscow) -- WHO, Russian Federation

Head of Project (NCD Moscow)
Vacancy Number: EURO/14/FT616
Duty Station: Moscow Russian Federation
Grade: P-6
Contract Type: Fixed-Term Appointment
Closing Date: 12 Jan 2015 

The GDO on Noncommunicable Diseases in Moscow is an integral part of the WHO Regional Office for Europe, to support the European regional programme for the prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). The objectives and deliverables of the GDO will mirror the demands for support from Member States.

The work of the GDO will be driven by the strategic objectives of reducing burden, increasing equity, and increasing participatory governance of health, as defined by Health 2020, the European Health Policy. The deliverables of the Office will be guided by the Global Action Plan on the Prevention and Control of NCDs 2013-2020 and its successors. As such, under the guidance of the Director of Noncommunicable Diseases and Life-Course, this office will also collaborate in projects of a Regional or Global nature that are consistent with its technical profile.

Under the guidance of, and in collaboration with, the Regional Office, the goals of the office will be to provide technical assistance to:

1. The development and evaluation of national action plans on the prevention and control of NCDs: indicative activities will include the conduct of situation analyses and country assessments to a framework developed in the Regional Office; contribution to training and consultation workshops, courses, and other forms of capacity-building; the evaluation of action and progress under national plans; and the production of documentation and case studies;

2. Intersectoral action for the prevention and control of NCDs: indicative activities include the conduct of research to document the social determinants of NCDs and the causes of inequity in the distribution of risk and burden across social gradients; the facilitation of intersectoral action in defined areas of priority action (such as fiscal interventions, marketing controls, and NCD-related interventions with agriculture, education, among others); the documentation of specific lessons and models of intersectoral action for dissemination in the Region;

3. The development of specific NCD-related sources of data in countries, feeding in to the regional and global monitoring frameworks: indicative actions include the development and strengthening of specific data sources in countries (national risk factor and capacity surveys, the development of special registers with emphasis on cancer, stroke, and screening registers); the production of national and regional reports on NCDs as a feed into the global and regional monitoring systems.

4. The implementation of evidence-based interventions for primary and secondary prevention of NCDs within primary health care systems: indicative actions include the collation of evidence-based guidelines and serving as a resource centre on the evidence base for prevention and care; the participation in joint missions with health systems experts in the assessment of the organisation and delivery of primary and secondary interventions in the area of NCD; the conduct of training workshops in the implementation of evidence based tool sets and guidelines; the design and adaptation of services and packages for the clinical prevention of priority NCDs and technical support for adapting and strengthening health systems to chronic care models and to long-term, rehabilitative, and palliative care; the design and adaptation of screening and early detection guidelines to the national situation.

The GDO will specifically focus on two main areas of this work:

1. Surveillance function: This area will relate to the development of high quality data on the determinants, risk, and burden of Noncommunicable diseases in the European Region as a whole and within specific countries. It will assist countries in increasing the quality of their routine data (including mortality, morbidity, registries, health care utilization statistics, among others) and ad hoc surveys (including surveys using such instruments as WHO-STEPS, childhood obesity surveillance initiative, global youth and adult tobacco surveys, and health behaviour of school aged children, among others). This function will also include the exploration of innovative methods for monitoring trends in NCDs, including the use of "big data", social media, VAT and sales data, electronic medical records and others to shed light on epidemiological patterns, the effectiveness of policy, and generate hypotheses on opportunities for interventions. This function will include driving all the data analysis and reporting obligations of the NCD Division in Europe, including, but not limited to: regional and global epidemiological reports, annual technical reports of the Office, evaluation reports, assisting countries to produce their own analyses, and efforts to disseminate findings of all this work in a form useful to policy makers.

2. Country Support function: This area will focus on providing countries with comprehensive, integrated advice on how to connect all the evidence-based approaches to noncommunicable diseases with a comprehensive, multisectoral approach consistent with other policies in the country as well as with Health 2020 and with Global Policies. This work will include, among others, consulting and advising countries on relevant evidence-based NCD interventions of a preventive or curative nature that are relevant to their context, developing opportunities for intercountry collaboration and exchange of experiences in the area of NCDs, conducting courses and learning experiences relevant to the needs staff and policy-makers in the area of NCD, relating to other work in the country on the field of NCDs such as participation in joint missions on health systems assessment, UN country teams, and the follow up of such missions.

Underlying Values and Core Functions of WHO:

All Member States of WHO in the European Region share the common value of the highest attainable standard of health as a fundamental human right. All of WHO actions are based on this and rooted in the underlying values of equity, solidarity and participation. The seven point global health agenda contained in WHO's Eleventh General Programme of Work (2006-2015) includes: (i) investing in health to reduce poverty; (ii) building individual and global health security; (iii) promoting universal coverage, gender equality and health related human rights; (iv) tackling determinants of health; (v) strengthening health systems and equitable access; (vi) harnessing knowledge, science and technology; and (vii) strengthening governance, leadership and accountability.

WHO's mandate revolves around six core functions: (i) providing leadership on global health matters; (ii) shaping the health research agenda; (iii) setting norms and standards; (iv) articulating evidence-based policy options; (v) providing technical support to countries; and (vi) monitoring and assessing health trends.

The European Region (EURO) of WHO is made up of 53 countries, with over 880 million people. The diversity of people and health situations requires, on the demand side, a solid understanding of the emerging socio-economic, epidemiologic and demographic patterns and trends at both aggregate as well as national and sub-national levels, with due sensitivity to disadvantaged populations and vulnerable segments of the society. On the supply side, it is equally crucial to have a solid understanding of the commonalities and divergences of the health systems, the circumstances and political economy under which they have evolved and operate and, more specifically, how these bear upon the way the health system stewardship function of health ministries is carried out.

Mission of the WHO Regional Office for Europe and Objective of the Division of Noncommunicable Diseases and Life Course

The Division of Noncommunicable Diseases and Life Course aims to improve health during all stages of life by addressing the social, environmental, behavioural and biological determinants of chronic diseases. The Division achieves this aim by applying the principles and practice of health promotion as well as integrating the prevention, control and management of disease in order to:

(a) assist countries in the Region to design, establish and run effective health and intersectoral programmes that are able to tackle the burden of chronic diseases and conditions, particularly focusing on:

(i) noncommunicable diseases (cancers, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and chronic respiratory diseases) as well as related conditions and risk factors (harmful use of alcohol and illicit drugs, tobacco use, overweight and obesity, unhealthy diets and physical inactivity);

(ii) mental health and neuro-degenerative disorders;

(iii) violence and injuries.

(b) assist countries to promote health across the life course, particularly focusing on:

(i) child and adolescent health;

(ii) sexual and reproductive health, including making pregnancy safer, women's health and rights;

(iii) healthy ageing;

(c) maintain regional integrated surveillance systems and assisting countries in developing disease and risk factor surveillance systems, to determine and monitor burden of disease, risks factors and health determinants, and to propose relevant applied research projects, health interventions and partnerships to tackle the acute and long-term health impact of those diseases and risk factors.
Description of duties:
Under the guidance of the relevant supervisors, the incumbent will assume the following responsibilities and achieve the following objectives:

To provide strategic leadership and visibility for the work of the GDO, seeking out innovative opportunities, guiding the publications of the Office, leading the GDO's interactions with Member States, donors, and stakeholders, and acting as role model for scientific and diplomatic work,

To conduct the general management of the GDO including development, implementation, and reporting on biennial work plans, and the management of budgetary and human resources,

To convene, manage, and lead the secretariat of a scientific advisory committee for the GDO,

To act as the focal point for accountability for all the technical work and evaluations of the GDO and to report on these to the Director of NCDs and Life-course,

To ensure optimal coordination with the host country, including maintaining constant liaison and communication and ensuring timely reporting and evaluation,

To lead the work of the GDO in the development and implementation of integrated UN activities in the the surveillance, prevention, and control of NCDs in European Member States,

To ensure technical quality and competence in the work of the GDO and to be responsible for the overall timeliness and quality of all programme deliverables of both country and intercountry work plans;

To contribute to regional plans to implement global and regional strategies in the surveillance, prevention, and control of NCDs, documenting gaps therein for the definition of the research agenda on the subject matter;

To ensure consistency and cohesiveness in the surveillance, prevention, and control of NCDs with the WHO guidelines, approaches, and messages, contributing to the WHO normative function,

To coordinate international activities of the GDO with relevant UN agencies, organizations and partners in the technical area,

To produce authoritative and relevant policy papers and briefs on the subject matter,

To coordinate and ensure a timely and flexible response to surges of demand for technical support such as occurs, for example, when there are inter-country discussions on policies relating to NCDs, conferences, and intense national debates on controversial policies.

REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS
Education:
Essential: Advanced university degree (at least Master's level) in Medicine, Health Sciences or Noncommunicable Diseases.

Desirable: Postgraduate degree in a relevant subject or a combination of training in the prevention of control of NCDs and surveillance of NCDs.
Skills:
The Head of the Project should be:
- Identified with the core values of the World Health Organization.

- Skillful in modern management methods (performance measurement, design and operation of modern management information systems, planning and evaluation, etc)

Other skills: Excellent computer skills, including a standard package of office applications.

Competencies required:

Producing results: Produces and delivers quality results. Is action oriented and committed to achieving outcomes.

Fostering integration and teamwork: Develops and promotes effective relationships between team members to assure full use of the team competencies in the unit work outputs. Able to promote innovative arrangements to maximize the effectiveness of his/her team in line with variations in workload.

Ensuring the effective use of resources: Organizes and effectively manages the financial and human resources needed to achieve results within WHO strategic directions.

Building and promoting partnerships across the Organization: Builds and maintains mutually beneficial work relationships and alliances inside and outside the organization.

Creating an empowering and motivating environment: Guides and motivates staff and teams towards meeting challenges and achieving objectives. Skillful in understanding the potential motivating factors of his/her staff to adjust to new approaches in an increasingly complex environment.
Experience:
Essential: More than ten years of progressively responsible experience working in the area of non-communicable disease, of which at least 5 years at the international level in senior managerial positions and proven track record in implementation of health programmes and/or reforms and institutional restructuring. Track record in positions that required strong leadership of highly-skilled professional teams in multidisciplinary tasks with precise goals. Documented scientific or policy development achievements directly related to the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases and/or public health policy.

Desirable: Working experience within the World Health Organization or other UN agencies. Work in the field of international relations, strategic planning, managing change and team building.
Languages:
Essential: Fluency in written and spoken English language with working knowledge of another official WHO language and/or EURO official language (Russian, French, Chinese, Arabic, Spanish or German).

Desirable: Knowledge of other WHO/Europe official languages is an asset, particularly Russian.
Additional Information:
(*) Extension of appointment is subject to a) satisfactory performance, b) continued need for the function, and c) availability of funds.

Similar positions at the same grade may be filled using this vacancy notice.

Long-listed candidates may be contacted to sit a written test or presentation prior to final short-listing. This does not preclude a written test or presentation prior to final interview.

Interviews will take place using a competency-based approach.

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