Malaria Specialist

  • Mid-level, Long-term consulting assignment
  • Posted on 18 November 2020

Job Description


The U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) is an interagency initiative led by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented together with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The PMI Strategy for 2015-2020 to work with PMIsupported countries and partners to further reduce malaria deaths and substantially decrease malaria morbidity, towards the long-term goal of elimination.

Benin has been a PMI focus country since 2008. The PMI/Benin program has four full-time malaria team members with the USAID health office director providing overall day to day leadership of the team. The four full-time PMI staff include one offshore/third-country hire USAID Resident Advisor, one offshore hire CDC Resident Advisor, one locally-hired Malaria Data Specialist, and one locally-hired Malaria Specialist. These full-time in-country PMI/Benin team members are based at USAID and work with the Government of Benin (GOB) to oversee the $17 million annual U.S. Government investment in Benin.

The Malaria Program Management Specialist, in collaboration with the USAID and CDC President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) Advisors based in Benin, will be part of the Mission’s Health Team and assist in overseeing the planning, management and monitoring of multiple projects and activities in the malaria control project within the USAID’s Mission in the Benin program portfolio. The position is based in Cotonou.


1. Program Management (50%)

The Malaria Specialist, in collaboration with the malaria team, is responsible for all aspects of the Mission’s malaria programs and activities: planning, organizing, implementing, coordinating, and monitoring for results. S/he serves as a consultant to host government and other in-country partners in matters related to national activities aimed at malaria services. S/he serves as a permanent member of the USAID/Benin Health Team. S/he shall support the health portfolio while focusing on malaria activities, working with the entire health team to achieve mortality reduction goals.

In carrying out these responsibilities, the Malaria Specialist:

a) Takes an active role in developing specific program goals and objectives for Benin malaria initiatives. Incumbent prepares directives, memoranda, policy statements, and proposals to introduce new initiatives and to recommend effective operations consistent with strategic objectives of the President’s Malaria Initiative and the agency’s PMI program in Benin. The annual agency budget for malaria programs in the Benin in $17 million. Works in close collaboration with other health program elements to ensure coordination and integration of malaria activities in the health portfolio. Participates in the development of planning documents such as the Malaria Operational Plan (MOP), and Benin Mission Project Appraisal Documents (PAD), malaria quarterly reporting, and activity descriptions.

b) Works closely with senior and mid-level Government of Benin officials,), Global Fund, other donors, and international and non-governmental organizations to: a) ensure sound management of malaria interventions implemented in the country; b) coordinate outreach that raises awareness among civic and social organizations of malaria issues and services available; c) provide technical assistance to ensure that malaria activities are based on the latest relevant science and that scientific knowledge is translated into guidelines, practices, and program implementation; and d) influence other organizations engaged in malaria programs to adopt appropriate strategies for their program activities. Specific technical areas may include but are not limited to: case management of malaria including diagnosis in health facilities and at the community level, distribution of malaria commodities and LLINs through health facilities, large-scale “universal coverage” campaigns, work with the private sector, intermittent preventive treatment of pregnant women, seasonal malaria chemoprevention, and development of information, education and communications and behavior change communication (IEC/BCC) materials to promote the use of these interventions.

c) Monitors, provides guidance to, and oversees results of activities funded through grants, contracts, cooperative agreements, and other mechanisms to accomplish malaria program strategic objectives. The Malaria Specialist monitors implementation activities and collaborates with each partner organization on a regular basis to ensure program results are achieved and all malaria-related study protocols meet human subject requirements and pass through ethical review with the appropriate Agency authority. This involves regular site visits and meetings with representatives of each organization and the National Malaria Control Program to review progress. Coordination of such activities involves close working relationships with senior and mid-level GOB officials in the Ministry of Health (MOH) and other agencies, multilateral and bilateral donors, non-governmental and civil society organizations to make sure that malaria programs and activities are carried out correctly and in a timely manner. The Malaria Specialist presents findings and recommendations for appropriate action to correct identified program deficiencies to the head of section.

d) Ensures that U.S. government (USG)-supported malaria activities conform to international and national guidelines as well as to agency technical strategies, including integration of malaria services within maternal and child health programs and service provision protocols. The Malaria Specialist supports host government and USG efforts to enhance linkages and collaboration between malaria and other relevant technical areas, e.g. antenatal care, community-based services, and laboratory. This includes partnering with agency and inter-agency colleagues in other health programs to ensure that collaborative service delivery networks include comprehensive malaria services and protocols.

e) Provides latest information, either through written materials or briefings, to implementing partner staff on data collection methodologies and monitors process and progress in collecting data. The Malaria Specialist ensures that appropriate malaria objectives are achieved by helping to develop systems for the collection, analysis, and reporting of malaria program activities data. S/he assists with activity data collection, integrity, and reporting.

f) Ensures technical and financial reports on PMI implementation are prepared and submitted as required. Prepares regular and frequent oral and written reports (including feedback on technical and program reports) to the GOB, USAID Country Representative, inter-agency PMI committees, and other interested parties on the progress of specific malaria program activities. Independently writes up findings of research and other malaria program findings to be used for reports, proposals, publications and presentations at national and international meetings. The Malaria Specialist provides advice and recommendations to chief of section and/or supervisor and other agency officials in interpreting data on health objectives and indicators related to malaria.

g) As Contract/Agreement Officer’s Representative (AOR/COR), Government Agreement Technical Representative, and/or Activity Manager of one or more activities, carries out management responsibilities for malaria-related awards. S/he drafts and/or provides technical direction for proposals that result in an award for malaria programs. S/he ensures consistency with PMI policies and host country policies and regulations.

h) Oversees the public health technical aspects in development of the Scopes of Work, Funding Opportunity Announcements, Requests for Applications/Proposals, or Annual Program Statements and reviews applications, supplemental awards, and requests for extensions for activities under his/her purview. Once an agreement is in place, s/he participates with implementing partners in the development and review of work plans for implementation of activities, oversees partner performance , carries out technical reviews, monitors progress, identifies potential issues, and recommends actions for amelioration.

S/he collaborates closely and communicates regularly with his/her supervisor and the malaria team.

2. Coordination and Liaison Services (25%)

As an expert on matters pertaining to malaria programs, the Malaria Specialist represents the USG at technical, policy, and strategic planning meetings. S/he briefs senior agency officials, PMI, and the U.S.

Mission officials of other USG agencies as appropriate on the results of such meetings and prepares written reports for submission to other interested parties.

The Malaria Specialist participates as an agency representative at inter-agency administrative and strategic planning meetings where recommendations for countrywide financial commitment targets for malaria programs are developed. Such meetings may include representatives of PMI implementing agencies: Health and Human Services (including Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), and USAID.

S/he serves as the agency representative on inter-agency technical working groups to: a) assess existing in-country assets and activities supporting the minimum package of malaria services and developing approaches to strengthening such activities with minimal overlap and unnecessary duplication; b) ensure effective coordination of work plan development, implementation strategies, and evaluation plans for USG agency malaria activities in Benin; c) assess program needs and issues at the local level and develop strategies for communicating these needs/issues to the national level; and d) based on information received in the national committees, recommend revisions to the USAID Mission and PMI team program policies and guidelines for malaria services.

The Malaria Specialist establishes and maintains working relationships through participation in meetings, seminars, receptions and similar types of activities with U.S. Embassy staff, various host government, private sector and non-governmental representatives to further the ability of the incumbent to gain insight into evolving issues and concerns of interest to USAID. S/he liaises with State (Embassy and Washingtonbased staff) to communicate progress and achievements of USAID malaria programs and advance coordination. S/he provides input to organization of site visits, drafting of memos for high-level USG officials from Washington and for the Ambassador.

3. Administrative Management (25%)

The Malaria Specialist is responsible for providing oversight and monitoring the budgets allocated to implementing partners within his/her portfolio. This includes reviewing budget requests for appropriateness, monitoring use of funds for adherence to proposed activities; conducting quarterly pipeline reviews/budget status reports, following up on irregular findings, providing advice for realignments of budgets, and calculating accruals.

The Malaria Specialist maintains files and records for malaria activities/partners for which s/he is responsible. Working closely with the PMI team, job holder is responsible for data integrity and security of information specific to malaria. Other program and activity files include reports, meeting summaries and minutes, copies of all grants/cooperative agreements/contracts, research determinations, panels, and awards, which will be filed electronically and/or in paper files.

Job holder prepares and occasionally presents briefings for Congressional and Executive delegations, industry leaders and other high-level visitors and participates in making arrangements for visits, serving as spokesperson as required. S/he serves as control officer for site visits for agency and inter-agency PMI senior-level officials.


a. Supervision Received:

The Malaria Specialist will be supervised by the USAID/Benin Health Team Leader or his/her designee, but is expected to work closely on a day-to-day basis with USAID PMI Advisor in terms of activity planning and coordination. Performance is evaluated primarily in terms of results achieved and compliance with human resources performance evaluation policy.

b. Supervision Exercised:

This position is not anticipated to supervise staff.

c. Available Guidelines:

International standards for public health care; Agency directives, policies and regulations; USAID/Benin mission orders; President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) documentation and guidance, and other documents deemed necessary; Automated Directive System; Global Fund guidelines and policies; host country regulations and policies.

d. Exercise of Judgment:

Required to make independent and professional judgments on the quality and effectiveness of health development programming. Required to develop strategies for eliciting cooperation and commitment for implementation and evaluation activities from implementing partners, seniorlevel staff of USAID and other USG agencies, and the MOH. Substantial judgment must be exercised in setting priorities and deciding what outside assistance is necessary, and for drawing conclusions and formulating recommendations based on analyses.

e. Authority to Make Commitments:

Position has no authority to make financial commitments. However, the position holder exercises moderate authority over the planning, design, implementation and management of project activities. All major written communications to parties outside the Mission involving policy are submitted to the Health Team Leader for clearance.

f. Nature, Level, and Purpose of Contacts:

The incumbent makes frequent contacts within the Mission and with MOH officials, donors, representatives of multilateral organizations, and NGOs concerning malaria issues, policies, coordination, and consultation.

g. Time Expected to Reach Full Performance Level: One year


The position is open to Cooperative Country Nationals (an individual who is a Benin citizen – or a non-Benin citizen lawfully admitted for permanent residence in Benin).

All applicants must provide proof of eligible citizenship in their application. Non-Benin citizens must attach copies of their permanent residency permit to their application to be eligible for consideration. No relocation expenses are provided to the job location, Cotonou, Benin. If transportation to Cotonou is required, it will be the employee’s responsibility.


The work requested does not involve undue physical demands.

POINT OF CONTACT: and copy Clemencia Acacha Bonou at and Jean-Luc Tinongbe at


In order to be considered for the position, a candidate must meet the Minimum Qualifications.

Applications will be pre-screened and only those that meet the Minimum Qualifications will be considered. These are the minimum qualifications necessary to be considered for the position:

a) Education:

A minimum of a Master’s degree or equivalent in Public Health (MPH), Social Sciences, International Development or in related fields is required.

b) Prior Work Experience:

A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible professional-level experience in the management and implementation of regional and/or national level health programs in malaria control, with an emphasis on preventive public health programs is required. At least five years of this experience should be in public-health related work with other donor organizations, host government organizations or private sector institutions in the developing world.

c) Post Entry Training:

Incumbent is required to attend professional seminars to expand knowledge, skills and abilities in public health technical areas. Specific training on USAID and PMI approaches to program design, implementation, financial management, monitoring & evaluation, and reporting will also be provided. Agency-specific leadership development training, and training related to management of grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements is required (specifically PDM and AOR/COR training).

d) Language Proficiency (List both English and host country language(s) proficiency requirements by level (II, III, IV) sp/rd/wr:

Level IV (fluent) in written and spoken English and French is required. Ability in one more Beninese Languages is required.

e) Job Knowledge:

Job holder must possess comprehensive knowledge of health programs, policies, regulations, precedents, protocols and ethical considerations applicable to the development and administration of health development programs in Benin. A detailed working knowledge of host government and international public health systems is required.

Job holder must have a good working knowledge of a range of U.S. Government public health programs and strategies, specifically in malaria, and a detailed understanding of the President’s Malaria Initiative. Strong technical knowledge of malaria best practices is required. Good working knowledge of team management techniques and a detailed technical working knowledge of administrative, budgeting, and fiscal management systems in support of funding mechanisms such as contracts, cooperative agreements, grants, and purchase requisitions is required.

Comprehensive knowledge in public health is required. Thorough knowledge of current malaria and health systems reform issues is required. Detailed knowledge of the host government health care system and structures including familiarity with MOH policies, program priorities and regulations is required.

f) Skills and Abilities:

The incumbent must be innovative, possess a strong sense of diplomacy, have excellent interpersonal skills and be capable of working both as a team member and independently. Strong leadership and interpersonal skills to work with all levels of staff in a team setting to accomplish program goals are required. A high level of oral and written communications skills is required in order to convey program progress and technical requirements; to influence other collaborative organizations engaged in public health development programs to adopt appropriate strategies for their program activities; and to maintain effective working relationships with national and international health partners. The person must also exercise sound, independent, professional judgment in negotiating program design and implementation decisions within the USAID/Benin health team as well as with counterparts within the host government and partner organizations.

Excellent analytical and planning skills are required. Incumbent must be capable of collecting, organizing, and analysing information and data to prepare accurate and timely reports related to program activities. Good administrative skills, including budgeting and fiscal management abilities in support of contracts, cooperative agreements and contracts is required. Good working knowledge of computer software programs such as word processing, spreadsheets and databases is required. The incumbent must have the ability to conceptualize, manage and evaluate activities.

The incumbent must be capable of traveling extensively within Benin to design, monitor and evaluate program activities. Occasionally, travel to USAID/Washington and/or in the region may be required for training and consultation purposes.


Submission of a resume alone IS NOT a complete application. This position requires the completion of additional forms and supplemental materials as described in this section.

Candidates who fail to provide the required documentation will result in rejection of their applications from further consideration.

Qualified Offerors must submit the following documents, or their applications will not be considered for this position:

1. Signed U.S. government AID 309-2 form (OFFEROR INFORMATION FOR


following link:, in English. All applicants must submit complete dates (months/years) and hours per week for all positions listed on the form AID 3022 to allow for adequate evaluation of your related and direct experiences. Applicants should note that the salary history for the purposes of the AID 302-2 is the base salary paid, excluding benefits and allowances such as housing, travIf you encounter problems downloading the form, please contact us at and copy Clemencia Acacha at and Jean-Luc Tinongbe at, educational support, etc.

Applicants should retain for their record copies of all enclosures that accompany their applications. Application should be in the English Language.

2. Cover letter and current resume or curriculum vitae (CV), in English. The CV/resume must contain sufficient relevant information to evaluate the application in accordance with the stated evaluation criteria. Broad general statements that are vague or lacking specificity will not be considered as effectively addressing particular selection criteria. Complete dates (month/year) are also required on CV.

FCFA 18,024,666– FCFA 33,345,636, equivalent to FSN-11

In accordance with AIDAR Appendix J and the Local Compensation Plan of

USAID/Benin. Final compensation will be negotiated within the listed market value.

PERIOD OF PERFORMANCE: Five-year renewable contract. The position will be reviewed annually and renewed contingent on satisfactory performance, continued need for services, and availability of funds.

PLACE OF PERFORMANCE: Cotonou, Benin with possible travel as stated in the Statement of Work.

CLOSING DATE/TIME FOR RECEIPT OF OFFERS: December 11, 2020 at 12:00 noon Cotonou Local Time

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