Senior TB Diagnostic Network Advisor

Country: Ethiopia
Organization: Public Health Institute
Closing date: 31 Oct 2020


FELLOWSHIP TITLE: Senior TB Diagnostic Network Advisor

HOST ORGANIZATION: National TB Program Office, Ministry of Health and Ethiopian (30%) and Ethiopian Public Health Institute (70%)

LOCATION: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

POSITION LEVEL: Senior Advisor


TRAVEL: 30-40% estimated travel


Sustaining Technical and Analytic Resources (STAR) is a project of the Public Health Institute (PHI) supported by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) Global Health (GH) Bureau. Its purpose is twofold: (1) Through individual fellowships, STAR will help strengthen the capacity of diverse American and low-and-middle-income country (LMIC) health professionals at all levels to make innovative contributions to global health (GH); and (2) STAR will create ground-breaking opportunities for both US and LMIC GH academic institutions and other groups, including professional associations, to create systems for open-access knowledge sharing, resulting in effective partnerships. STAR’s individual and institutional participants are contributing to the development of self-sustaining systems and tools that will produce global citizens with the full spectrum of relevant health competencies. STAR is managed by the Public Health Institute and implement in partnership with Johns Hopkins University (JHU), the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), and the Consortium of Universities for Global Health (CUGH).


The STAR Fellowship is a two-year global health and learning opportunity with:

  • Individualized, tailored support to enhance the fellow’s achievement personal and professional goals.
  • Personalized learning plans and access to learning resources (courses, conferences, mentoring) based on fellow’s learning style and preferences.
  • Access to broad professional networks to enhance peer learning and knowledge sharing.



STAR fellowships are is a key component of the Administrator's TB Accelerator to reach the UN General Assembly TB Declaration targets as well as build the capacity and commitment of the host governments to ensure TB self-reliance through evidence-based TB programs.


The Senior TB Diagnostic Network Advisor (Senior Advisor) will work closely with the Ethiopian Public Health Institute (EPHI) and the NTP to address strategic priorities related to the implementation and monitoring of the National TB Laboratory strategic plan with special emphasis on support to the national diagnostic network to ensure quality, expansion and utilization of rapid TB diagnostic and screening services

Reporting structure:

The Senior Advisor will be c0-located at the Ethiopian Ministry of Health, National TB Program Office (30%) and EPHI (70%). S/he will work closely with National TB Laboratory Coordinator and USAID/Ethiopia and receive technical direction from the National TB Program Manager.

Essential Duties and Outcomes:

Build capacity of NTP and EPHI to ensure quality, expansion and utilization of TB diagnostic and screening services:

  • Advise the NTP/EPHI on the development, implementation, and regular monitoring of the National TB diagnostic strategic plan.
  • Support the expansion and coordination of the new and rapid techniques to diagnose TB, essentially GeneXpert MTB/Rif technology and liquid culture and LPA techniques.
  • Together with local laboratory and program counterparts, conduct technical supervisory/ mentoring visits to sub-national programs and provide timely feedback to all levels.
  • Support the planning, implementation, and monitoring of TB laboratory quality assurance (external and internal).
  • Support the linkage of the regional reference labs (RRLs) with the National Reference Lab (NRL) or other Sub-regional reference laboratories for External Quality Assurance (EQA).
  • Support the accreditation of TB diagnostic laboratories.
  • Support the development/ strengthening, implementation and monitoring of preventive and curative maintenance systems for TB diagnostics.
  • Provide technical support to support the establishment/strengthening of TB laboratory supply forecasting, procurement, compounding, distribution, and rational use systems.
  • Provide technical support for MOH (NTP and EPHI) to establish and roll out TB laboratory information system that will provide real time data for decision making and TB diagnostic/ laboratory improvement.
  • Support the National TB program and EPHI in the development/strengthening of policy guidance for a meaningful engagement of Non-NTP providers in the expansion and utilization of rapid TB diagnostics.
  • Support EPHI and Regional TB reference laboratories to conduct annual TB laboratory program review to identify best practices, successes and challenges and develop improvement plans.

Build human resource capacity of national and sub-national TB diagnostics teams to be self-reliant in TB laboratory program management:

  • Support EPHI/ National TB laboratory coordination office, regional reference laboratories and EQA centers to conduct annual capacity assessment of the laboratory personnel on TB diagnostic technical and program management core competency skills.
  • Support EPHI/ National TB laboratory coordination office, regional reference laboratories and EQA centers to strengthen the SOWs, performance factors, learning and growth plans of the TB diagnostic work force at EPHI and regional reference laboratories.
  • Maintain knowledge of TB control innovations and new technologies and disseminate through onsite and off-site training of national and regional laboratory staff.
  • Provide on the job training & continuous mentoring/coaching for the EPHI & RRL TB diagnostic teams with the goal of maintaining/developing the core competency skills of TB diagnostics.
  • Mentor, conduct supportive supervision, and inspire the National TB Reference Laboratory (NTRL) Technical Officers, while creating an environment of sharing, technical debate and innovation.
  • Provide capacity building support (training, mentoring, coaching) to the national TB diagnostic team (national TB reference labs, regional reference labs) in proposal development, program planning and implementation, program monitoring, report writing and review skills with a semi-annual target of developing proposals and producing individual quality reports.
  • Develop the capacity of the National and regional TB reference laboratory team to develop, implement and monitor the annual M&E plan.
  • Build capacity of National, Regional, and selected Zonal staff in management of laboratory services, laboratory data management, quality assurance and diagnostics or other identified knowledge gaps.
  • Build the TB laboratory team’s capacity and required skill mix to forecast, plan and procure TB laboratory supplies.
  • Develop National TB laboratory management training manual and cascade training to the National and regional reference TB laboratory/diagnostics teams.

Improve coordination and partnership:

  • Identify areas for crosscutting collaboration with NTP coordination office, implementing partners and other programs (HIV, Malaria, medical service directorate) in regard to TB Lab issues.
  • Together with the NTP Manager and National TB Laboratory Coordinator, facilitate the coordination with other partners who are supporting TB and TB/HIV lab strengthening activities.
  • Maintain close communication with the National TB Program and collaborate with other technical partners and attend regular NTP and relevant TWG meetings.
  • Work in close coordination with the HIV and Malaria program for integrated diagnostic and sample referral services and quality assurance (internal and external).
  • Ensure coordination of laboratory strengthening activities throughout Ethiopia.
  • Assist EPHI to conduct regular meetings with partners (donors, technical partners, local organizations, and others).
  • Provide leadership in technical laboratory working groups and meetings with other partners.
  • Scale up the engagement of other actors in TB diagnosis (private providers, non-NTP public health facilities and others).

Improve communications:

  • Provide continuous, in-country day-to-day support to EPHI and the NTP on National TB laboratory Strategic Plan (NSP) development, implementation, and monitoring.
  • Submit progress report monthly and twice annually a monitoring and evaluation report to USAID staff.
  • Participate in regular conference calls with USAID staff as needed.

Anticipated learning outcomes: * Required 10% time

  • Demonstrate proficiency across the core global health competencies defined as development practice, cross cultural awareness, communication, capacity strengthening, ethics of public health, health equity, gender equality and global burden of disease that is necessary for persons practicing in global health.
  • Cultivate mentorship skills based on the STAR GH mentorship curriculum to more effectively support and improve knowledge transfer and skills acquisition of staff, incoming fellows and interns.
  • Advance leadership skills to successful support capacity building and knowledge sharing activities, and mentor develop junior staff.
  • Apply leadership skills and technical expertise to support programmatic growth and scale up within TB programming.



  • PhD or Master of Medical Laboratory Sciences, or relevant degree, (master’s in microbiology will be an advantage).
  • At least 13 years of relevant (TB laboratory/diagnostic) experience in designing, implementing, and managing TB diagnostics in developing countries with a preference to African experience with a masters or 15 years of relevant experience and a bachelors.
  • Experience in strengthening, managing, and leading and a complex portfolio of laboratory network preferably TB laboratory/diagnostics.
  • Knowledge of mycobacteriology laboratory work and network (preferably in Ethiopia or in other similar settings).
  • Desirable technical and program management experience and knowledge on GeneXpert and/or other rapid TB diagnostics and Culture and DST.
  • Proven ability in TB diagnostic program management and leadership, strategic planning, producing policy documents, and problem-solving skills in TB diagnostics.
  • Experience with USAID projects is an advantage.
  • International TB laboratory technical and program management experience will be preferred.
  • Proven ability to work with a broad range of partners/ stakeholders (implementing partners, health ministry, other government offices, donors, and technical agencies).
  • Demonstrated ability and experience in conducting trainings, other capacity building activities (such as mentoring, coaching, supervision, and others), facilitation, and coordination.
  • Ability to work both independently and in a team environment to achieve consensus on plans, policy, program, and administrative matters is a must.
  • Experience in managing successful teams composed of experienced professionals.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills.
  • Ability to work in a cross-cultural work environment.
  • Excellent written and oral communications in English and knowledge of the local culture is an advantage.
  • Good computer skills, including familiarity with Microsoft Office programs.
  • Ethiopian Citizenship preferred.

How to apply:


All applicants are required to apply for this position through STAR’s online recruitment system at, which allows you to store your CV/resume and separate cover letter describing your qualifications and experience, interest and familiarity with issues relating to this position, and how this position relates to your career goals is required for each application. Position will remain open until filled.

Application Link:


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