Closing Date : 2019-06-14
Duty Station : Suva, Fiji
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Organization: Pacific Community
Country: Fiji
Closing date: 14 Jun 2019

The Pacific Community (SPC)is the principal scientific and technical organisation in the Pacific region, supporting development since 1947. We are an international development organisation owned and governed by our 26 country and territory members. In pursuit of sustainable development to benefit Pacific people, our organisation works across more than 20 sectors. We are known for our knowledge and innovation in such areas as fisheries science, public health surveillance, geoscience, and conservation of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture.

The Public Health Division (PHD)supports members in developing healthier Pacific Island communities by providing assistance in public health surveillance, and in the prevention and control of communicable and non-communicable diseases. The primary focus of the division is to provide scientific and technical assistance and to support the implementation of plans and programmes in member countries and territories. The primary goals for all PHD activities is to promote population health and well-being, help communities prevent disease and restore and/or maintain health, and reduce inequalities in health. PHD is primarily concerned with improving and protecting public (population) health, rather than providing individual treatment services. PHD is comprised of three programmes: Research, Evidence and Information (REI); Non-Communicable Diseases (NCD) Prevention and Control; and Strengthening Specialised Clinical Services in the Pacific (SSCSiP). This position is located within the NCD Prevention and Control Programme.

The role Senior Laboratory Adviserwill lead, plan and manage the laboratory strengthening and capacity building work of the Surveillance, Preparedness and Response Programme. This includes providing technical advice and oversight of laboratory quality management systems assessments and strengthening of health laboratory surveillance for outbreak-prone priority infectious diseases under the Pacific Public Health Surveillance Network (PPHSN); anti-microbial resistance (AMR) surveillance; broader infectious disease surveillance systems through the LabNet and Laboratory Technical Working Body (LTWB). This role will support Pacific Island countries and territories in their health security work in the strengthening of health laboratory systems for infectious diseases and anti-microbial resistance surveillance through a One Health/Planetary Health platform. Whilst the work will focus primarily on public health systems, there will be frequent interfaces with clinical laboratories given the set-up of laboratory systems in many of the countries.

The key responsibilities of the role include:

Team management, administration and communicationStrengthen national and regional laboratory capacity Enhance evidence-based service delivery through researchBuild national and regional capacity in anti-microbial resistance surveillanceSupport implementation and strengthening of Pacific Public Health Surveillance Network (PPHSN) services

For a more detailed account of the key responsibilities, please refer to the job description provided.

Key selection criteria


A medical qualification (MD, MBBS or equivalent)Post-graduate qualification in a relevant field, such as pathology

Knowledge and experience

At least 12 years of experience in clinical and public health laboratories, including laboratory quality management Knowledge of laboratory-based management and surveillance in developing countriesLaboratory information systems experience Previous experience developing or delivering training courses or capacity building in public health laboratory surveillanceExperience working in Pacific Island countries and territories or other developing countries

Essential skills

Technical knowledge of laboratory-based surveillance, communicable diseases, epidemiology and related fields, such as environmental healthAbility to analyse relevant information, identify issues and determine prioritiesAbility to synthesize technical and scientific information for transfer of knowledgeLeadership and management skills Advocacy, networking and negotiation skillsResults-orientated problem-solving and decision making skills Project management skillsAbility to write reports and represent PHD and SPC at external meetings and conferences

Language skills

Excellent English communication skills (oral and written) with a working knowledge of French being an advantage

Interpersonal skills and cultural awareness

Ability to work in a multicultural, inclusive and equitable environment High level of interpersonal skills, including the ability to foster institutional collaboration and cooperation between national and regional institutes and laboratories Salary, terms and conditions

Contract Duration Three years depending on available funding

RemunerationThe Senior Laboratory Adviseris a Band 12 position in SPC s 2019 salary scale, with a starting salary range of 3,393 4,242 SDR (special drawing rights) per month, which currently converts to approximately FJD 10,010 12,512 (USD 4,818 6,023; EUR 4,062 5,078). An offer of appointment for an initial contract will normally be made in the lower half of this range, with due consideration given to experience and qualifications. Progression within the salary scale will be based on annual performance reviews. Remuneration of expatriate SPC staff members is not subject to income tax in Fiji; Fiji nationals employed by SPC in Fiji will be subject to income tax.

Benefits for international employees based in Fiji SPC provides a housing allowance of FJD 1,230 2,750 per month. Establishment and relocation grant, removal expenses, airfares, home leave, medical and life insurance and education allowances are available for eligible employees and their recognised dependents. Employees are entitled to 25 days of annual leave and 30 days of sick leave per annum, and access to SPC s Provident Fund (contributing 8% of salary, to which SPC adds a matching contribution).

LanguagesSPC s working languages are English and French.

Equal opportunitySPC is an equal opportunity employer. Recruitment is based entirely on merit; in cases where two short-listed candidates are judged to be of equal rank by the selection committee, preference will be given to Pacific Island nationals.

Child protectionSPC is committed to child protection, irrespective of whether any specific area of work involves direct contact with children. SPC s Child Protection Policy is written in accordance with the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Police clearanceSuccessful candidates will be required to provide a police clearance certificate.

How to apply:
Application procedure

Closing Date14 June 2019

Applicants must apply online at

Hard copies of applications will not be accepted.

For your application to be considered, you must provide us with:

an updated resumecontact details for three professional refereesa cover letter detailing your skills, experience and interest in this positionresponses to all screening questions

Please ensure your documents are in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF format.

Applicants should not attach copies of qualifications or letters of reference. These documents may be requested at a later stage.

For international staff in Fiji, only one foreign national per family can be employed with an entity operating in Fiji at any one given time. The Pacific Community does not support dual spouse employment.

Please ensure that you respond to all the screening questions.If you do not respond to the screening questions, your application will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed at shortlisting stage.

Screening Questions:

Describe your experience in designing, developing and implementing a laboratory surveillance system including surveillance for AMR.

Provide a relevant example of a situation where you had to work with multi-sectoral teams in addressing public health issues and some of the lessons learnt.

Describe your experience in laboratory quality management systems, and in particular capacity strengthening.

In your view, what would be the key building blocks for accreditation of laboratories and provide a recent example of your involvement in accrediting a national laboratory.

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