Senior Newborn Health Specialist

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Senior Newborn Health Specialist
Location: All Nigeria
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Job Description:

  • The MCSP Senior Newborn Health Specialist will be responsible for providing technical leadership and support to Federal and State Ministries of Health as well as partner organizations on national level advocacy efforts for newborn health interventions, including the finalization and implementation of a national scale up plan for chlorhexidine.


Facilitate implementation, track, and report progress on the Chlorhexidine Scale-up Plan by providing technical support to FMOH and implementing partners at national and state-level. This work could include:

  • Facilitate a mapping of the landscape of the current status of chlorhexidine implementation in Nigeria
  • In collaboration with USAID’s Center for Accelerating Innovation and Impact (CII), contribute to the development and implementation of a national scale up plan for chlorhexidine
  • Assist FMOH and SMOH to develop and institute a national monitoring and evaluation plan for chlorhexidine implementation within the context of newborn health programming
  • Work with FMOH to strengthen the coordinating mechanisms for chlorhexidine implementation within existing FMOH structures
  • Participate in and support the integration of chlorhexidine programming into key relevant national health technical working groups and/or steering committees
  • Work with relevant FMOH/NPHCDA teams to generate national demand for the use of chlorhexidine through the adaptation and development of key BCC messages and other communication tools
  • In collaboration with FMOH and partners, lead the planning and conduct of advocacy visits to the remaining states and firm up plans to provide support to the states for the development of their action plans to implement the new chlorhexidine policy
  • Facilitate the finalization of the review of federal-level Essential Medicines lists (and those of selected states) ensuring the inclusion of chlorhexidine gel and other newborn health lifesaving commodities and the establishment of a national chlorhexidine procurement and distribution mechanism in the context of newborn health
  • Support FMOH and SMOH in increasing awareness of the policy change for care of the umbilical stump using 4% chlorhexidine gel through the engagement of Tertiary Institutions, Pre-service training institutions, Professional Regulatory bodies, MDAs, Pharmaceutical Council, community pharmacies, and Patent Medicine Vendors associations, on the distribution of chlorhexidine.
  • Support FMOH and the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) to integrate chlorhexidine application knowledge and competency in all relevant MNCH training and counseling materials
  • Work with NAFDAC to ensure the final certification of the manufacturers to provide additional sources for the gel.
  • Participate in regular global Chlorhexidine Working Group meetings in order to be up to date on global level information and activities as they relate to the Nigeria context
  • Support the ongoing advocacy within the national TSU for the adoption of simplified antibiotics for neonatal sepsis management
  • Facilitate and participate in regular Maternal and Perinatal Death Surveillance and Review (MPDSR) Steering Committee Meetings
  • Collaborate with Saving Newborn Lives (SNL) to ensure approval of the integrated MPDSR guidelines by the National Council of Health and support national review of MDR and PNDA implementation in Nigeria.
  • In collaboration with SNL, contribute to the development of the national KMC operational guidelines and advocate for the adoption of the guidelines in non-MCSP states


  • Healthcare and management experience (MBA, MD, MPA, MPH, MD, or MBBS) with a post graduate qualification in public health, business, pediatrics or related field preferred
  • Substantial experience in public health program management administrative and advisory capacity.
  • Demonstrated capacity to develop a network of contacts with key players from amongst government, donors, international agencies and NGOs, to maintain these relationships over time and to support mobilization of significant funding from donors. Existing public and private health relationships strongly preferred.
  • Familiarity with existing national policies, guidelines and programs in the context of newborn health in Nigeria.
  • Technical expertise in newborn health and experience in providing technical support to partners, particularly government at senior levels preferred.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills with the ability to communicate and negotiate clearly and effectively at all levels. Presentation and training skills, along with tact and diplomacy are essential.
  • Proven capacity to deliver results against objectives, reporting schedules and work plans.
  • Excellent analytical and conceptual skills and the proven ability to translate these into concise high quality reports and lessons learnt documents.
  • Confidence in using word processing and spreadsheet computer packages.
  • Fluency in written and spoken English and ability to make compelling technical presentations.
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