The post aims at strengthening the national immunization programme of Ghana, including routine immunization, new vaccines introduction and supplementary immunization activities in accordance with established technical guidelines, in order to reduce morbidity and mortality attributable to vaccine preventable diseases.
Job Title: National Professional Officer
Summary Of Assigned Duties
Management and Administration:
- Provide overall project coordination and resource management in all areas of the immunization programme, monitors programme indicators and analyses programmatic and surveillance data for use in programme management.
- Work closely with the national government to support their implementation and evaluation of immunization projects and to ensure a comprehensive approach to health interventions.
- Support the development and implementation of strategies and activities within the Comprehensive Multi-Year Plan (cMYP) and annual EPI plan for strengthening service delivery and surveillance of vaccine preventable diseases, and fostering the inclusion of financial sustainability planning in the national programme.
Technical Assistance And AdviceStrengthening of the national immunization system:
- Designs appropriate regular routine vaccination services through fixed, outreach and mobile sites, including use of opportunities such as child health days and other integrated health interventions to deliver immunization.
- Collaborates in analytical studies and implementation research in the field of immunization to develop guidelines and recommend solutions to programme concerns and weaknesses.
- Organizes capacity building and training of the national immunization programme team in the technical area of immunization and in immunization programme management.
- Assists with developing the national Comprehensive Multi-Year Plan, as well as annual operational workplans, and supports the on-going monitoring of these plans.
- Supports the management of the national immunization supply chain, ensuring management of the cold chain, at central and peripheral levels, planning and management of the transportation of vaccines and injection equipment to peripheral levels, and the management of immunization waste.
Supporting accelerated immunization initiative activities and the introduction of new vaccines:
- Reviews, updates and provides technical support and guidance on the implementation of accelerated immunization initiative (AII) activities within the annual EPI plan as well as establishes and implements a system to monitor all indicators.
- Supports the national government to develop new vaccine applications to the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (Gavi).
- Develops new vaccine introduction activities, pilot studies for malaria vaccine trails, and other health initiatives across the life course within the national cMYP and annual EPI plans, and develops the necessary guidelines to ensure smooth implementation of these initiatives at national and sub-national levels.
Strengthening Immunization Health Information Systems
- Monitors and evaluates national immunization policies and programmes, supporting the national immunization programme to collect, collate, analyse and use high quality data for action.
- Organizes capacity building and training of the national immunization programme team in the collection, collation and analysis of immunization data and in the use of data for programmatic actions to improve health outcomes.
- Supports the country to investigate opportunities for internal and external information sharing and strengthens the capacity of national authorities to build and sustain national information platforms ensuring immunization data is integrated within.
- Supports the country to move towards an integrated surveillance system for vaccine preventable diseases, that is part of the national health information system.
- Contributes to innovations in health by promoting new ideas and technologies, including information and communications technology, to make data collection, analysis and use more effective and efficient.
- Develops and implements a strategy and plan of action to strengthen the monitoring and evaluation system of the immunization programme and to improve the immunization programme at all levels.
Supporting the establishment and strengthening of surveillance of vaccine preventable diseases:
- Provides technical support to strengthen the provision of vaccine preventable diseases surveillance data and the monitoring of and reporting on established indicators to comply with Regional and International Health Regulations (IHR) disease reporting requirements.
- Implements, monitors and evaluates laboratory-based surveillance of vaccine preventable diseases.
- Works with the country to establish and maintain a national surveillance system to detect and respond to adverse events following immunization (AEFIs), and to provide capacity building and training to national immunization counterparts in the area of vaccine safety.
Partner Coordination And Resource Mobilization
- Facilitates coordinated approaches in the implementation of the national immunization programme through working closely with representatives of global initiatives, engagement with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and civil society to achieve inter-sectoral health outcomes and contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
- Engages constructively with other international development agencies in-country, in particular other United Nations agencies to deliver together to achieve development goals.
- Supports the national government to develop Health Systems Strengthening (HSS) applications to the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (Gavi)
Education (Qualifications)Essential: University degree in Medicine or Public Health or related field.Desirable: Post graduate training of Masters’ Degree in public health or epidemiologyExperienceEssential:
- A minimum of five years of relevant work experience in public health and immunization programmes, surveillance and data management.
- Demonstrated experience in working with stakeholders and partners in the area of immunization or related public health programmes.
- Training/experience in immunization, surveillance and data interpretation.
- Experience in resource mobilization and policy development.
- Experience in planning, monitoring and reporting on public health programmes, in particular with child health weeks, community mobilization and health promotion activities.
- Experience in organizing and delivering capacity building of health workers.
LanguagesExcellent knowledge of English is required. Knowledge of French would be an advantageOther Skills (e.g. IT)Proficiency in all MS Office applications, spreadsheets and data analysis. Proficiency in epidemiology or statistical software packages would be an asset.