ITM vacancies

Disease Control Program Manager
Department of Public Health
Mycobacterial and Neglected Tropical Diseases
  Apply before: 01 Feb.

  Introduction

The Institute of Tropical Medicine in Antwerp (ITM) has as aim the advancement and spread of the sciences that contribute to tropical medicine and to public health in developing countries, inclusive of their global dimensions. ITM provides fundamental, translational and applied scientific research,  delivers advanced education and provides medical, scientific and societal expert services. ITM is an open and international campus where staff, students and researchers work on new international health challenges.

The mission of the Department of Public Health (DPH) is to conduct public health research of international standing, provide postgraduate education of high quality and engage in service delivery with the ultimate goal to advance global health. Since 2014, the DPH has been closely involved in operational research and disease control program implementation for gambiense human African trypanosomiasis (gHAT) in the Democratic republic of the Congo (DRC). After a major upsurge of cases that peaked in the 1990s and that has in all probability caused hundreds of thousands of deaths, mostly in DRC, gHAT is now under control again (since three years less than 1000 cases per year)  and thanks to recent innovations there is even the prospect of eliminating transmission. Elimination of transmission is the goal stated in the WHO roadmap for neglected tropical diseases 2021-2030. To achieve this goal ITM provides technical and operational support to the national gHAT control program of DRC, the PNLTHA, and also supports general health facilities diagnosing and treating gHAT patients. This support is funded through long term grants from Belgian development aid as well as from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.  

In close consultation with the PNLTHA and other national and international partners, a strategy has been developed to adapt the gHAT control program of DRC to the changing epidemiological situation and the prospects for elimination of transmission. Elimination of transmission is considered possible to achieve because gHAT is assumed to have a human reservoir and a single dose oral treatment is now well advanced in the development pipeline. This would allow treating all serological suspects, avoiding complex parasitological confirmation procedures. Our aim over the coming years is to support the restructuring of gHAT control activities in DRC to ensure that the new treatment once available can be quickly rolled-out.

For this purpose we seek to recruit a disease control program manager. We are looking for a candidate with a medical background and experience of coordinating health projects in low and middle income countries.

  Assignment

  • Your primary assignment is to support strategic planning and implementation of new HAT control strategies (active and passive case finding, treatment and surveillance) in close collaboration with the PNLTHA, other partners in DRC and ITM-colleagues, in accordance with the principles agreed upon between PNLTHA and ITM.  
  • You will assure coherence and oversight, as medical operational coordinator, of all ITM supported HAT control and research activities in DRC.
  • You will follow up ongoing operational research on gHAT in DRC, identify additional operational research needs and design and implement studies when and if required.
  • You will strengthen the reporting, and data analysis capacity of the PNLTHA data team.

  Profile

  • You are a medical doctor with a strong interest in disease control. A diploma in tropical medicine or a Masters in Public Health is an asset.
  • Experience in gHAT is not a prerequisite but experience in managing disease control programs in general is a major asset.
  • You have at least one year of personal experience in health project coordination in low-and middle income settings.
  • You have good skills in biostatistics, epidemiological study design and data analysis or are prepared to actively develop such skills.
  • You have good writing skills, having published articles in peer reviewed medical or epidemiological journals is an asset.
  • You are willing to be based in Kinshasa, hosted in the ITM DRC Office or to visit DRC regularly (approximately 6 visits per year).
  • You are a team player.
  • You are fluent in English and French.

  Offer

ITM is committed to building a diverse, equitable and inclusive institute. We strive for excellence and relevance, integrity, sustainability and persistence and fairness. Your assignment contributes to our mission. We value human dignity and diversity, academic creativity and a critical spirit, solidarity and cooperation, and the well-being of employees, students, patients and clients. We offer you:

  • A full-time position for 2 years, extendable. Starting date as soon as possible.
  • A salary set according to the pay scales of ITM and the Flemish universities and to your work experience with some supplementary benefits, such as private pension scheme and meal voucher subscription.
  • A pleasant working atmosphere with attention to work-life balance and individual growth and development.

  Interested?

For more information about this position, please contact HR (recruitment@itg.be).

Send your CV together with your letter of motivation to recruitment@itg.be before 1 February, 2022.

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