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Kenya: National Consultant – Laboratory Biorisk Assessment - VA-019-2017

NGO/UN Job Vacancy

Organization: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Country: Kenya
Closing date: 29 Jun 2017

Position Title: National Consultant – Laboratory Biorisk Assessment

Contract Type: Personal Services Agreement

Duty Station: Nairobi, Kenya

Organizational unit: FAO Representation Office in Kenya

Duration: 10 days when actually employed

Eligible candidates: Kenyan Nationals

Anticipated Start Date: July 2017


The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations in collaboration with the Directorate of Veterinary Services are implementing a United States Agency for International Development (USAID) funded program entitled “Supporting the Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) to Address Zoonotic Disease and Animal Health in Africa”. The specific objective of the programme is to “Build capacity to prevent, detect and respond rapidly to priority zoonotic diseases using a multi-disciplinary and multi-sectoral One Health Approach”. The program covers the following GHSA Action Packages (APs) or technical areas: Zoonotic Diseases, Biosafety and Biosecurity, National Laboratory Systems and Workforce Development.

Biological agents and toxins handled in the laboratory are a potential hazards posing a risk to personnel working in a laboratory and facility, and likely to surrounding animal and human communities beyond the laboratory. The first step in achieving this operational goal is to assess the safety and security risks present in the laboratory.

A risk assessment is the fundamental process to aid in the determination, management, and mitigation of laboratory risks. The primary purpose of a laboratory risk assessment is to inform the decision-making process that reduces the risks present in a laboratory. Mitigation of these risks will ultimately protect the individuals in the laboratory, in the facility and/or institution, as well as those outside the biological laboratory, including both the human and animal communities. The results of a risk assessment provide a guide for the selection of appropriate biological safety measures (including microbiological practices and safety equipment), security measures, and other facility safeguards to mitigate the determined risks to an acceptable or manageable level.

The benefits of risk assessment in the laboratory extend beyond risk reduction and mitigation. Laboratory risk assessments can also help to provide the following:

  • Effective allocation of resources to mitigate risks
  • Identification of training needs and supervision
  • Advance planning for renovation
  • Evaluation of procedural changes
  • Compliance with governmental regulations
  • Justification for space and equipment needs
  • Evaluation of emergency plans
  • Planning for preventative maintenance
  • Evaluation of exchanges and workflow with other laboratories/units

Reporting Line and Scope of the assignment

Within the framework of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Emergency Centre for Transboundary Animal Disease Operations (ECTAD), under the overall supervision of the FAO Representative in Kenya and direct supervision of the ECTAD Kenya Country Team Leader, the consultant will undertake the following tasks:

  • Conduct laboratory biorisk assessment of the Central Veterinary Laboratory (CVL) and Veterinary Research Institute Laboratory at Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO)

Specifically the consultant will undertake the following:

  • Assess Biorisk using risk assessment methods consistent with the European Committee for Standardization (CEN) Workshop Agreement on Laboratory Biorisk Management, OIE chapters on Biorisk Management or equivalent

  • Assess all areas of biorisk management (Biosafety and Biosecurity) in the laboratory which will comprise of the following; laboratory premises and facility design, storage facilities, sanitation and staff facilities, heating and ventilation, lighting, laboratory biosecurity, fire prevention and fire protection, personal protection, health and safety of staff (biosafety), laboratory equipment, handling of infectious materials, waste management, flammable liquid storage, electrical hazards and chemical hazard containment and radioactive substances and shipping of infectious substances.

  • Evaluation of biorisk system performance of the CVL and KALRO and identify gaps in the laboratory

  • Identify and rank hazards and their potential for causing harm

  • Create awareness on the importance of biorisk assessment

  • Monitor the effectiveness of controls in the laboratory

  • Make recommendations on mitigation measures (corrective measures) in the biorisk system performance

  • Write and deliver a completion report to FAO and DVS

Minimum Requirements

  • Advanced University Degree in Veterinary Medicine/Laboratory Technology or relevant field

  • Advanced training in laboratory biorisk management

  • Minimum of 5 years experience of working in a veterinary laboratory

  • Minimum of 5 years experience in biorisk management

  • Knowledgeable in veterinary laboratory network systems in Kenya

  • Working knowledge of English


  • Results Focus

  • Teamwork

  • Communication

  • Building effective relationships

  • Knowledge sharing and continuous improvement

How to apply:

Candidates are requested to submit their application by email to quoting the position title and vacancy announcement number.

A duly completed Personal Profile Form (PPF) generated from FAO’s iRecruitment portal as a PDF-file is to be submitted by email together with a cover letter. Please note that attached resumes or CV’s in place of the PPF will not be accepted.

In order to prepare a Personal Profile Form, you must first register on the FAO iRecruitment site by clicking on the following link to register: In order for your application to be properly evaluated, please ensure that all sections of the on-line profile are completed.

Applications received after the closing date will not be given consideration. Only short listed candidates will be contacted.

This vacancy is open to both male and female candidates. Qualified female candidates are encouraged to apply. Persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply.