Hiring Organization: Alliance for International Medical Action (ALIMA)
Location: Owo, Ondo
The humanitarian crisis in Nigeria’s northeast and the Lake Chad region is one of the most severe ongoing crises in the world, now entering in its ninth year and shows no sign of abating. In 2018, at least 7.7 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance in the worst affected states of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe, while more than 1.6 million people remained internally displaced in these three states in November 2017. 86% of internally displaced persons (IDPs) do not believe that the current context allows for a safe and dignified return, and nearly 1 in 4 IDPs have expressed their intent to settle in their current place of displacement instead of returning (OCHA HRP 2018).
An estimated 440,000 children under the age of 5 are malnourished across the 3 most-affected States (HRP, February 2018), while 47% of them are in Borno State (207,521 SAM children, HPC Nutrition Figures, November 2017). Furthermore, The Nigerian Cadre Harmonisé (November 2017) states that in Borno State alone 1,575,414 individuals were facing critical food insecurity. The Maiduguri Metropolitan Center (MC) and Jere Local Government Authority (LGA) are still categorized as “in food crisis” by the IPC (Integrated Food Security Phase Classification).
In 2017, ALIMA continued to implement projects in Muna Garage in Jere LGA, where ALIMA performs general consultations for children under 5 and provides Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) to pregnant and lactating women (antenatal and postnatal consultations). ALIMA partners with UNFPA to manage victims of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV). An Outpatient Therapeutic Feeding Program (OTP) is also available for children under 5 suffering from severe acute malnutrition (SAM) in the clinic, where women and caretakers are trained to screen their children for malnutrition using the MUAC tape.
In Maiduguri MC, where ALIMA is working in partnership with the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital (UMTH), the Inpatient Therapeutic Feeding Center (ITFC) manages children under 5 suffering from SAM with medical complications in a 30-bed capacity building.
In the same way, ALIMA has continued working in Monguno in 2017 in 5 IDP camps (GGSS, GSSS, GDSS, Kuya, and Waterboard), in local host communities (Gana Ali, Abari, Bakassi) and in the Maternal and Child Health Center (MCH). In Monguno, ALIMA was the lead agency for the nutrition sector. In the IDP camps and in the host communities, ALIMA delivers primary health care and OTP to children under 5. In the MCH, ALIMA provides sexual and reproductive care including Basic Emergency Obstetric and Newborn care. Based in Monguno, a rapid response team conducted an emergency intervention in Baga and Doro towns (Kukawa LGA) in November 2017 to provide emergency OPD, OTP and SRH in 2 sites. The emergency team also responded to cholera outbreak from August to November 2017 in Maiduguri and Monguno, joining its efforts and coordinating its actions with the State Ministry of Health and partners
In January 2018, ALIMA in partnership with Borno state government via ministry of rehabilitation, Ministry of Health and Hospital management board start the 3 years early recovery project funded by DEU and will be implemented in 4 LGA, Askira-Uba, Hawul, Ngala and Monguno focusing on strenghness of health staff capacity and rehabilitation of hospital and PHC.
In addition, to improve the humanitarian response, we are carrying out operational and clinical research projects particularly in the field of the fight against malnutrition and viral hemorrhagic fevers.
Lassa fever (LF) is an acute viral illness (epidemic prone disease) that can result in a viral hemorrhagic fever (VHF) syndrome. The causative agent is the Lassa virus, which is primarily transmitted by rodents. The illness was first reported in Borno State, Nigeria in 1969. Since then cases and outbreaks continue to be reported in Nigeria and the diseases is increasingly recognized to be endemic in many other parts of West Africa. Treatment includes the antiviral drug ribavirin and supportive care. However, there is relatively little scientific information on the disease and its treatment, and there is a significant need for research data. The WHO has therefore classified Lassa fever as a priority disease for research and development.
Thus, the laboratory manager will be responsible for the ALIMA/INSERM’s VHF laboratory at FMC Owo, in Nigeria in collaboration with the VHF lab head. The successful candidate will be in charge of the Lassa RT-qPCR and standard biological analysis as well as the routine activities of the laboratory.
He / She will participate in setting up new instruments and in the writing or modification of new standard operative procedures if necessary. She / He will also ensure the good follow-up of the laboratory needs and will be responsible for a biobank of Lassa fever samples.
ALIMA’s teams in Nigeria represents 324 National staff and 35 expatriates.
Direct Line Manager: Project Coordinator
Technical Referent: Research team leaders, VHF lab head, the lab scientists
Collaborate with the medical team, the research team, the logistic team to run the lab properly.
Mission and Main Activities
Manage the VHF lab team:
In coordination with the VHF lab head, the chosen candidate will supervise a team composed of laboratory scientists and technicians (6 persons or more) to organize the work, rosters, quality of work and be in charge of any necessary trainings.
Ensure that the laboratory is operational 7 days a week during the peak season (to be adapted during the inter-epidemic period).
Routine activities of VHF lab (Hematology, Biochemistry, Serology and cross-matching analysis):
Be in charge of supervising standard biological analysis performed in the VHF lab and that all results are accurate, reliable and communicated to the medical team on time.
Ensure that good laboratory practices are applied and that bio-safety rules are respected.
Ensure the maintenance of the different analyzers, according to the manufacturer recommendations.
Collaborate with research teams so that blood test results are included in the different research projects.
Collaborate with the logistic team regarding any new improvement for the laboratory (new equipment, power supply, …) and to make sure that all the lab items (PPE, reagents …) are ordered on time so that no shortage occurs.
Collaborate and coordinate with the different research teams and medical teams to ensure that samples are received by the laboratory and stored accordingly to the different research or medical needs.
Lassa RT-qPCR activity at FMC Owo:
To supervise the daily PCR runs and to ensure the quality of the results obtained.
Make sure that no shortage arises in the PCR reagents.
Ensure that PCR results are communicated as soon as possible to the Lassa ward.
Be in charge, the VHF lab head, of the Lassa biobank and of its cold chain monitoring to ensure the safety and integrity of the samples.
Be in charge of conducting administrative formalities towards competent regulatory bodies regarding biobank registration and material transfer agreements (MTA).
Other activities outside the VHF lab:
Participate in the organization and conduct of activities directed to FMC Owo general laboratory’s staff, in collaboration with the project coordinator (PC). This could include, among other topics, training to standard biosafety rules, good laboratory practices.
Experience and Skills
At least a Master’s degree in Molecular Biology with a qualification in Microbiology (Virology, Bacteriology, Parasitology or Mycology). Alternatively, several years of experience working in high containment laboratories (BSL-3 or BSL-4).
Strong knowledge of PCR and PCR-related techniques and blood processing is necessary. Working experiences in Ebola or Lassa Fever outbreak or other viral hemorrhagic fevers will be appreciated.
Desirable working experience with International medical NGOs in developing countries.
English Speaking, reading and writing, mandatory. French is an asset.
Essential computer literacy (word, excel, internet)
Negotiation, strong interpersonal skills, and teamwork spirit.
Capacity to work under pressure and to adapt to unexpected situations.
Contract term: contract under French law, 6 months’ renewable.
Salary: depending on experience + per diem
ALIMA Pays for
Travel costs between the expatriate’s country of origin and the mission location
Medical cover from the first day of the contract to a month after the date of departure from the mission country for the employee
Evacuation of the employee
Salary: Based on experience + daily perdiem (20$ per day).
2.08 leave days per months
Break policy: 7 days of break every three months.
How to Apply
Application Procedure and Notice
To apply, please send your CV and your answers to our job page
Applications are processed in the order of arrival and we reserve the right to close the offer before the term initially indicated if a good application is successful. Only full applications will be taken into account. Only accepted applications will be contacted.
Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
Interested and qualified? Go to Alliance for International Medical Action (ALIMA) on candidatures.alima.ong to apply