Regional Adviser, Access to Medicines and Health Products

World Health Organization

  • Copenhagen


  • Permanent

  • Full-time

Purpose of the Post:

To advise and support European Member States on the development and implementation of policies, systems and frameworks to improve access to quality medicines and health products to advance the implementation of Universal Health Coverage in a sustainable manner. To cultivate and strengthen strategic partnerships with relevant external partners and organizations. The incumbent leads and coordinates the access to medicines and health products team and facilitates timely implementation of all activities including budget and human resources oversight.

Objectives of the Programme and of the immediate Strategic Objective:

The Division of Country Health Policies and Systems (CPS) assists countries in the Region with the design and implementation of appropriate health policies and systems to strengthen universal health coverage. It works to strengthen data-driven, evidence-informed, contextually tailored health policy development and implementation at national, regional and local levels, taking an inclusive approach across the life course. The Division advocates strengthening of public health leadership, focusing on implementing policies that are people centred, promote health, prevent illness, and address the social and economic determinants of health, while fostering leadership on equity, human rights and gender mainstreaming in health. It focuses on building capacity for health systems innovation to enable the sustainable delivery of high-quality primary health and community services that are effectively linked to hospitals, and mental health, public health and social care services. To do so, CPS supports country efforts to facilitate access so as to leave nobody behind, to improve financial protection, to strengthen the health workforce, to increase access to affordable medicines and technologies, and to promote the uptake and implementation of digital technology.

The Access to Medicines and Health Products (AMP) unit will work to provide strategic direction, technical assistance and tailored support to countries to improve access to quality medicines and health products in a manner that is reliable, affordable and sustainable for health systems across the European Region. This will include supporting work towards a new social contract through which patients, health systems and governments can attain affordable pharmaceuticals that meet their needs, whilst investors and the pharmaceutical industry are incentivized. It will engage with stakeholders within the FENSA process and the spirit of partnership through the WHO convening responsibility, as well as accelerating the implementation of resolution WHA 72.8 on improving market transparency. The unit will develop country capacity to tackle vulnerabilities in regulatory, production, procurement and supply chains, with a focus on sub-standard and falsified medicines and health products. It will work cross programmatically to improve financial protection by addressing out of pocket payment and high pricing for medicines as well as to improve governance of the whole medicines management system.

Summary of Assigned Duties:

The incumbent will advise and support European Member States on the development and implementation of policies, systems and frameworks to improve access to quality medicines and health products to advance the implementation of Universal Health Coverage in a sustainable manner. S/he will cultivate and strengthen strategic partnerships with relevant external partners and organizations. The incumbent leads and coordinates the access to medicines and health products team and facilitates timely implementation of all activities including budget and human resources oversight.

Key duties:

1. Serve as the WHO EURO technical content expert and focal point in the area of access to medicines and health products; ensure technical quality and competence in the AMP unit and be responsible for the overall timeliness and quality of all technical deliverables.

2. Contribute to the overall CPS Divisional objectives and wider Regional Office objectives as set out in the European Programme of Work including supporting work on the flagship priorities of mental health, digital health, immunization and behavioural & cultural insights, across the broad area of medicines and medical products spanning from development, regulation, pricing * procurement and clinical utilisation and management

3. Lead the unit to provide advice to policy makers to enable patients, health systems and governments to access affordable pharmaceuticals that meet their needs, whilst investors and the pharmaceutical industry are incentivized to develop or manufacture medicines. on The incumbent will ensure that in the improvement, development and evaluation of policy processes, the human rights and gender equality perspective is incorporated in all policies at all levels and all stages, by the actors normally involved in policy-making;

4. Coordinate the provision of technical assistance with the development of mechanisms, instruments and tools to accelerate the implementation of World Health Assembly resolution WHA72.8 on market transparency to improve access to high-priced innovative medicines and vaccines;

5. Establish, cultivate and strengthen strategic broad partnerships, and coordinate international and regional activities with relevant organizations and partners. Build and maintain strong partnerships with EC and EU institutions, UN institutions and civil society partners;

6. To lead the development of technical and operational guidance; synthesize and disseminate related knowledge to build the evidence base for dissemination to Member States as required including producing authoritative and relevant policy papers, briefs and other publications on access to medicines and health products;

7. To coordinate the organization of conferences, events and policy dialogues at national, sub-regional and regional levels on related topics;

8. To perform the general management of the programme’s professional and general service staff, as first level supervisor (to include monitoring of workload, funds availability, performance management, and to establish mechanisms which ensure proper coordination within the team regarding travel, holidays), including, in liaison with the Head of Country Office, any technical programme staff based outside Copenhagen Manage financial and human resources in line with WHO policies and procedures;

9. To be responsible for effective and efficient implementation of projects and workplans and regularly monitor and assess the performance of workplans through evaluation and reporting; and

10. Perform other duties as assigned.

Competencies:

Teamwork

Respecting and promoting individual and cultural differences

Communication

Creating an empowering and motivating environment

Promoting WHO’s position in health leadership

Functional Knowledge and Skills:

1. Excellent analytical, organizational, communication and negotiation skills.

2. Diplomatic and technical skills in negotiating with Ministries of Health, and other ministries.

3. In-depth knowledge of political, social and health systems of countries of the European Region.

4. In depth technical knowledge on pharmaceutical legislation and policy at the global and regional level, including IPR.

5. Excellent technical knowledge across the broad area of medicines and medical products spanning from development, regulation, pricing * procurement and clinical utilization and management

6. Proven skills in leading scientific working groups, consensus building and development of policy guidelines.

7. Knowledge of the WHO and UN structure and functions.

8. Emotional awareness; the ability to identify and harness one’s emotions and apply them to tasks; and the ability to manage emotions, which includes both regulating one’s own emotions when necessary and helping others to do the same.

9. Ability to work comfortably in a fast-paced environment.

Educational Qualifications:

Essential: University degree (Master’s level) in pharmaceutical sciences.

Desirable: Doctorate in pharmacy or health economics.

Experience:

Essential: At least ten years working experience with increased responsibilities at country level. Experience in the field of medicines regulation or formulary management. Experience negotiating with the pharmaceutical industry.

Desirable: Working experience with the UN system, in particular WHO, or other relevant international organizations or programmes. Relevant experience in the WHO European Region.

Languages:

Fluency in English required. working knowledge of either French, Russian or German an asset.

REMUNERATION

WHO salaries for staff in the Professional category are calculated in US dollars. The remuneration for the above position comprises an annual base salary starting at USD 85,543 (subject to mandatory deductions for pension contributions and health insurance, as applicable), a variable post adjustment, which reflects the cost of living in a particular duty station, and currently amounts to USD 3963 per month for the duty station indicated above. Other benefits include 30 days of annual leave, allowances for dependent family members, home leave, and an education grant for dependent children.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

  • This vacancy notice may be used to fill other similar positions at the same grade level
  • Only candidates under serious consideration will be contacted.
  • A written test may be used as a form of screening.
  • In the event that your candidature is retained for an interview, you will be required to provide, in advance, a scanned copy of the degree(s)/diploma(s)/certificate(s) required for this position. WHO only considers higher educational qualifications obtained from an institution accredited/recognized in the World Higher Education Database (WHED), a list updated by the International Association of Universities (IAU)/United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The list can be accessed through the link: http://www.whed.net/. Some professional certificates may not appear in the WHED and will require individual review.
  • Any appointment/extension of appointment is subject to WHO Staff Regulations, Staff Rules and Manual.
  • For information on WHO’s operations please visit: http://www.who.int.
  • WHO is committed to workforce diversity.
  • WHO has a smoke-free environment and does not recruit smokers or users of any form of tobacco.
  • WHO has a mobility policy which can be found at the following link: http://www.who.int/employment/en/. Candidates appointed to an international post with WHO are subject to mobility and may be assigned to any activity or duty station of the Organization throughout the world.
  • Applications from women and from nationals of non and underrepresented Member States are particularly encouraged.

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