How can you make a difference?
The Health and HIV Section, UNICEF East Asia and Pacific Regional Office (EAPRO) is seeking applications for individual consultants to the Elimination of Mother to Child Transmission (EMTCT) of HIV, Syphilis and Hepatitis B– Dual and Triple Elimination roster.
Nature of Consultancy:
There has been a significant progress towards elimination of mother to child transmission of HIV and Syphilis in Asia and the Pacific region. Majority of countries are committed to and have adopted policies towards either dual or triple elimination to reduce new infant HIV, syphilis and hepatitis B infections to very low levels. Thailand and Malaysia were certified in 2016 and 2018 for HIV and Syphilis.
While extensive progress is being made in the region, the slow decline in the number of new HIV infections among children (ages 0 – 14) between 2010 – 2017 signifies that the agenda is still unfinished regarding the transmission of HIV to infants. Identifying pregnant women early during antenatal care, increasing testing coverage of pregnant women, access to antiretroviral therapy (ART) and syphilis treatment, retention in mother-baby pairs, early infant diagnosis (EID) and ART coverage for children with HIV and treatment for syphilis and Hepatitis B birth dose exposed children remain compelling priorities.
The regional office in collaboration with UN partners has supported the country offices and national counterparts (MNCH/HIV/immunization) in building their capacities on EMTCT including guidance on validation process in 2017 and 2018. In 2019 – 2020, EAPRO is seeking to further enhance the capacities of national MNCH/HIV/immunization focal points in the countries in the region on EMTCT of HIV, Syphilis and Hepatitis B through the consultation roster.
- Conduct in-depth literature review of all relevant documents related to health, MNCH, HIV, Syphilis, Hepatitis B including national policies, strategic plans and frameworks to determine health system gaps and barriers to effective coverage of EMTCT interventions.
- Conduct desk review of countries that have developed road maps for EMTCT.
- Conduct site visits including facilitation of stakeholder dialogues (implementing partners, health service providers, community-based health workers and beneficiaries including men, adolescents, young women including vulnerable populations- migrant and key populations) and key informant interviews to determine health systems related bottlenecks in the four areas – Data, programme service delivery, laboratory and human rights, community engagement and gender equality that are barriers to achieving EMTCT targets.
- Document the bottlenecks, conduct analysis and strategic actions (short, medium and long term) that can be adapted to address the challenges (Bottleneck analysis).
- Document promising/best practices on EMTCT of HIV, Syphilis and Hepatitis B.
- Conduct a national consultation workshop to review recommendations and framework for EMTCT.
- Develop EMTCT National Action Plan/road map for HIV, Syphilis and/or Hepatitis B.
- Prepare a final costed national EMTCT road map.
- Support national EMTCT validation process – Dual/Triple Elimination.
- Support review and writing of the EMTCT national validation report as per WHO guidance on validation.
Work Schedule and End Product: The range for completion of each task is from 5 to 30 days. However, work schedules, deliverables and final outputs will be agreed with hiring manager.
Estimated Duration of Contract: This is a call for consultants to be placed on the roster. The duration of contract and necessary official travel will be upon agreement with hiring manager.
Qualifications or Specialized Knowledge/Experience:
- Advanced degree in public health, social science, or related field.
- At least 5 years of extensive professional knowledge and experience in HIV, with significant technical expertise and experience on prevention/Elimination of mother to child transmission of HIV, Syphilis and Hepatitis B and/or Reproductive, Maternal, New-born and Child Health (RMNCH), Immunization.
- Strong experience of working with governments in Asia-Pacific or other regions.
- Strong strategic and analytical skills.
- Good communication skills, including writing skills.
- Ability to multi-task and meet tight deadlines under pressure.