CALL FOR EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST: Technical support to the implementation of CUTTS HepC research project in Armenia, Georgia and Tanzania

Médecins du Monde

1_BACKGROUND

Médecins du Monde France (MdM-F) is an independent organisation of active militants providing care, bearing witness and supporting social change, both in France and internationally. For the past 40 years, we have been committed to working with the most vulnerable individuals and their communities to break down the barriers preventing them from having access to healthcare.

BRIEF PRESENTATION OF THE PROJECT

Harm reduction is one of Médecins du Monde’s priority political battles. In this context, Médecins du Monde has developed the CUTTS HepC (Catalyse uptake of Under-utilised Tools & Treatment Simplification for HepC) project, funded by Unitaid (January 2023 – March 2027; $9.3M). MdM is the lead of a consortium formed with three other partners (INPUD1[1], Burnet Institute, University of Bristol).

This pilot program focuses on the prevention, screening, and treatment of hepatitis C among people who use drugs (PWUD), with a strong research and demonstration component. It aims to improve access to new or under-used prevention tools (long-acting buprenorphine and low dead space syringes), and to implement simplified screening protocols and integrated management models (treatment as prevention). It is being implemented in Armenia, Georgia, and Tanzania, and will be developed in coordination with the two other consortia selected by Unitaid under the same call for projects (the “Hepatitis C portfolio”).

2_DEFINITION OF THE CONSULTANCY MISSION

OBJECTIVE

In the context of this project, MdM-F is looking for a consultant to provide technical support to the implementation of the CUTTS HepC research project:

Facilitating the appropriation of study protocols by MdM field teams by liaising with research partners and protocol development groups at portfolio level.

  • Participate in protocol working groups (in charge of developing, monitoring and providing local adjustments to the protocols) with research partners to provide MdM’s operational expertise and disseminate ideas and/or conclusions to MdM teams in an appropriate manner.
  • In liaison with the country investigators, support the MdM field teams in developing and updating their action plan for implementing the research protocols, in terms of medical HR set-up, management of medical products and data collection (organization, relevance, consistency).
  • In coordination with research partners, contribute to the development and review of SOPs and training materials arising from study protocols.

Provide technical support for the implementation of the project with a focus on quality, in compliance with international best research practices and MdM’s ethics charter

  • Inform and participate in the training of the field health focal points, in the application of SOPs, and support them in the development/dissemination of policies, procedures, and medical information.
  • Answer technical questions from teams in the three countries on the implementation of research protocols; and facilitate problem-solving workshops with operational and research teams as necessary.
  • Keep an overview of the overall research objectives and required sample-size, identify potential barriers to reach the complete roll-out (sample size) of the research objectives in time.
  • In conjunction with the consortium coordinator and project managers / field medical teams, monitor the project’s indicators.
  • In liaison with field medical teams, support and monitor the implementation of the project’s health activities, especially:
    • the quality of medical care,
    • the quality of medical data collection and archiving in accordance with the GDPR and the standards in force in each country in terms of security and privacy,
    • the adequate management of medical products (review medical orders, analyze consumption of medicines, consumables and equipment, monitor the pharmacy and sources of supply).
  • Produce technical recommendations based on the results in order to respond to the needs of the project: propose corrective actions and changes to activities and resource planning (logistics, finance, medical HR), if necessary.

Contribute to the dissemination and uptake of project activities & results internally and at global level

  • In collaboration with the consortium coordinator, the project managers / study coordinator, the country-specific investigators, and the harm reduction advisor, contribute to the definition and implementation of the dissemination and uptake strategy.
  • Support the production and presentation of materials to promote the project activities and scientific results to a variety of audiences, both internally and externally at international conferences.

Cross-cutting

  • Implement scientific watch on harm reduction and Hepatitis C in collaboration with research partners.
  • Maintain an in-depth knowledge of operational issues, health data and scientific and technical questions in the harm reduction / hepatitis C sector in the 3 target countries.
  • Contribute to the revision and development of donor reports using information from the fieldwork.
  • In conjunction with the consortium coordinator, support the search for new funding relevant to the research activities.
  • Contribute to the knowledge management of the program.

The list of missions is non-exhaustive and may be modified as the project evolves and the needs of the South Caucasus and Tanzania missions.

METHODOLOGY

For this mission, the consultant will:

  • Identify priorities / coordinate with, and report to the consortium coordinator and harm reduction advisor.
  • Participate in regular meetings with consortium partners and country teams.
  • For each country (Armenia, Georgia, Tanzania), provide remote support by being in direct contact with the program manager, medical advisor, study coordinator, MEAL officer and country-specific investigator.
  • Carry out 1 to 2 visits during the project in each country for training and/or supervision purposes.

DELIVERABLES

  • Monthly activity reports.
  • Visit reports including recommendations.

3_PROFILE SOUGHT

Education & Experience

  • Medical training (doctor, nurse, etc.) or Public health training, and 5 years’ experience in the profession
  • Experience in operational or clinical research
  • Knowledge of the issues surrounding hepatitis C and harm reduction among people who use drugs
  • Experience of fieldwork with a humanitarian non-governmental organization is a plus
  • Experience of networking in a multicultural environment
  • Knowledge of the rights-based approach

Personal skills

  • Ability to work in a multidisciplinary team
  • Ability to speak in public

Know-how

  • IT: Ability to use the Office pack, videoconferencing tools and data management tools (knowledge of REDCap software is a plus)

Language

  • Fluency in written and spoken English
  • Knowledge of French will be an asset

Other skills

  • Understanding and analyzing a health context, health issues and health data
  • Analyzing and summarizing research issues, identifying constraints and needs in order to propose solutions
  • Analyzing medical and pharmaceutical indicators
  • Being familiar with international standard medical protocols in the field concerned
  • Identifying training needs, creating and running medical training modules
  • Designing, formalizing and adapting procedures/protocols/operating methods relating to his/her area of expertise

4_INDICATIVE TIMETABLE

The mission will be carried out from May 2024 to February 2025, for the equivalent of 3 days a week, and will include 1 to 2 two-week visits to each project country.

This timetable is subject to modification in response to changes in the context. These changes will be defined in agreement with MdM, according to needs and additional resources available.

5_DETAILED APPLICATION METHODS

DOCUMENTS TO BE SUBMITTED

Consultants who apply must submit:

  • A technical offer, including:
    • An updated CV
    • A letter of interest of maximum 3 pages indicating skills and experience of comparable missions, as well as dates of availability to conduct the consultancy.
  • A financial offer
  • A statement of no conflict of interest

INFORMATION FOR APPLICANTS

The information collected at the stage of your application is subject to data processing to constitute and archive a professional file for each application received and in the event of an audit of our internal procedures.

In compliance with the French law on information technology and civil liberties of January 6, 1978, amended in 2004, you have the right to access and rectify any information that concerns you. You can exercise this right by contacting Médecins du Monde, 84 Avenue du Président Wilson – 93210 La Plaine Saint Denis.

You may also, for legitimate reasons, object to the processing of your data.

In order to be authorised to apply, bidders must be able to establish, at the discretion of MdM, that they meet the legal, technical and financial conditions applicable and that they have the necessary capacity and sufficient resources to carry out the mission.

[1] International Network of People Who Use Drugs

How to apply

Expressions of interest must be sent to the following address: [email protected] with the reference “Consultancy / CUTTS HepC Research technical support”, before 30/04/2024 at 12:00 (Paris time/CET). Expressions of interest submitted in any other manner will not be taken into consideration.


Deadline: 30-Apr-24