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Request for Consultant: Strengthening Safe Blood Systems in Malawi to Prevent Maternal Mortality from Postpartum Hemorrhage at Results for Development

  • Consultancy
  • Malawi
  • Salary: 000

Results for Development

Results for Development (R4D) is a leading non-profit global development partner. We collaborate with change agents around the world — government officials, civil society leaders and social innovators — to create strong systems that support healthy, educated people. We help our partners move from knowing their goal to knowing how to reach it. We combine global expertise in health, education and nutrition with analytic rigor, practical support for decision-making and implementation and access to peer problem-solving networks. Together with our partners, we build self-sustaining systems that serve everyone and deliver lasting results. Then we share what we learn so others can achieve results for development, too.

We have a unique and vibrant culture at R4D. Diversity, equity and inclusion are at the heart of our work environment and help advance our mission. Diversity—of ideas, identities, perspectives and backgrounds—is vital to who we are and what we do. We seek people who embrace these values and will help reinforce them. Our work culture is collaborative, creative and entrepreneurial. We operate based on trust and respect. Teams across the organization frequently collaborate on programmatic work and support each other in continuously building a better R4D.

Background

Postpartum hemorrhage (PPH), or excessive bleeding after childbirth, remains a leading cause of maternal mortality worldwide. Despite the significant progress made in skilled birth attendance and availability of proven interventions for prevention and management of PPH, timely access to blood transfusions as an essential component of emergency obstetric care remains a challenge in settings where the national blood supply and safe blood systems are inadequate.

The Office of Maternal and Child Health and Nutrition (MCHN) within USAID’s Bureau for Global Health is providing MCH core funds through two global health mechanisms—the Health Systems Strengthening Accelerator (HSS Accelerator) and Market Access and Innovative Financing (MAIF)—to develop and implement a program of work in Safe Blood in select countries. Specifically, the Accelerator and MAIF, in close collaboration with USAID Missions, will utilize the USAID Safe Blood Starter Kit (developed under the Advancing Postpartum Haemorrhage Care activity) in 3 program countries—Liberia, Malawi, and Rwanda—to help analyse existing blood systems, identify primary barriers/challenges to availability of safe blood for treatment of PPH, and identify solutions/opportunities.

The HS Accelerator is seeking a locally based consultant in Malawi to support this work with project management and technical assistance. The consultant will lend their expertise and guide work in the initial implementation of the Starter Kit to assess existing challenges/barriers to the availability of safe blood, and, as needed, support analysis of findings and develop an agenda for country-level interventions.

Scope

  • As part of the HSS Accelerator team, the consultant will serve as a technical expert and facilitator to the Accelerator, MAIF, USAID Mission, and Government of Malawi partnership. The consultant will work collaboratively with all teams to identify and analyze country priorities to improve safe blood systems (utilizing the USAID Safe Blood Starter Kit) and advance national-level action planning. The consultant will play leading and facilitator role at workshops and convenings, engage in day-to-day liaison and coordination with key national actors on behalf of the implementers, and contribute to the analysis and development of key outputs

Consultant’s Scope Of Work

Phase I: Support the Accelerator and partners to popularize the Safe Blood Starter Kit with relevant in-country stakeholder and conduct a rapid review of recent work done to understand major blood system challenges in Malawi. This would include:

  • Support the Accelerator to identify and liaise with country stakeholders (both public and private) with relevant credentials and experience in MCH, blood system, and health policy to participate in one-on-one stakeholder interviews, convenings, and workshop(s). This includes supporting the Accelerator to engage with the national Diagnostics TWG, and assess its capacity to guide and inform the activity throughout its duration
  • Review previous assessments conducted on Malawi’s blood system, strategic documents guiding government’s priorities on safe blood, etc

Phase II: Support the HSS Accelerator and MAIF teams to utilize the Safe Blood Starter Kit to conduct a comprehensive assessment of Malawi’s blood system. This includes:

  • Help to conduct key informant interviews with relevant stakeholders to gather data and perspectives and apply the Starter Kit in line with the country context
  • Serve as in-country liaison to the national Diagnostics TWG, other relevant stakeholders, and the USAID Mission in Malawi to coordinate logistics for an in-country or virtual (TBD) national workshop to implement the Safe Blood Starter Kit
  • Support in facilitating the workshop to review findings from rapid desk review and translate evidence and perspectives into practical, actionable content
  • Support HSS Accelerator and MAIF to translate findings from data collection and workshopping activities into country-level implementation plans by using systems thinking (identifying systemic barriers, underlying causes, and feasible solutions)

Phase III: The consultant may also support the HSS Accelerator and MAIF with light-touch technical expertise for further development of the toolkit, including data collection and synthesizing initial findings.

  • The consultant may also participate in cross-country learning and sharing of lessons with two other intervention

Qualifications

  • Advanced academic or professional qualification in relevant field (public health, public policy, medicine, nursing, or similar)

Work experience of 10-plus years in the health sector in Malawi , preference will be given to those with demonstrated experience in the following areas:

  • Maternal and child health, obstetric care in primary health and emergency settings, blood banking and transfusion, management and supply of health commodities,
  • Working alongside key stakeholders in the health sector (e.g., government, civil society, private sector, development partners, etc.) in senior advisory capacity
  • Facilitating qualitative meetings, workshops and/or processes
  • Conducting qualitative research, ideally on clinical protocols and policy design

Deep knowledge of and expertise in health system issues in Malawi, including:

  • Systemic issues related to PPH and MCH, specifically delivery of maternal and child health services in primary and emergency care settings, including financing, governance and policy (e.g., hemovigilance), demand and supply of key commodities
  • Blood delivery systems
  • Actors and institutions in the health system and their dynamics and interactions
  • Experience using systems thinking approaches and learning and evaluation methodologies
  • Experience working with USAID projects and mechanisms
  • Strong English communication skills—both written and verbal
  • High level of organization, attention to detail, professionalism, and reliability
  • Enthusiasm, energy, and good judgement

Period Of Performance And Payment

  • The activity will commence in September 2022 for a planned implementation period of approximately 1 year. The consultant will be involved intensively in phase 1 and 2 activities and will be engaged as needed for the remainder of the program

Reporting Procedures

  • The consultant will report to the HSS Accelerator team for various tasks.
  • The contractual agreement will be between the consultant and Results for Development (R4D), as prime implementing partner on the USAID Health Systems Strengthening Accelerator project. However the consultant will engage and liaise with partners in the USAID and MAIF teams as part of jointly implementing the activity
  • The consultant should be based in Malawi, and would ideally be able to co-locate or meet with support staff from a locally-based Accelerator partner organization
  • Written report of work undertaken must be submitted to R4D

Method Of Application

Results for Development is an EOE/M/F/Vet/Disabled/Affirmative Action Employer committed to fostering

and nurturing an energetic, collaborative and diverse workforce. R4D provides market-competitive salaries and comprehensive employee benefits.

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