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Kenya: National Consultant – Laboratory Sample Transport and Referral Systems - VA-020-2017

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 Sample Transport and Referral Systems

Contract Type: Personal Services Agreement

Duty Station: Nairobi, Kenya with travel to Nyeri, Eldoret and Nakuru

Organizational unit: FAO Representation Office in Kenya

Duration: 15 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.

A high quality laboratory referral system is a core requirement in any program aimed at strengthening National laboratory systems. Epidemics in the recent past, notably, Rift Valley Fever, the endemic zoonoses like Rabies and Anthrax; and threats of emerging diseases like Avian Influenza and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS CoV), among others, revealed immense fragility in the laboratory referral system at the Directorate of Veterinary Services (DVS). Inordinately long laboratory turn-around-times was a common result of this deficiency of the system and stood in the way of prompt interventions following disease outbreaks or threats.

An effective specimen referral system in veterinary laboratories ensures a close relationship between all levels of animal health service delivery system and helps to ensure people receive efficiently and effectively. Support to veterinary laboratories and animal health services by experienced staff from the national, regional or veterinary facilities helps build capacity and enhance access to better provision of services.

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 identify gaps in the laboratory sample transport and referral system of the Directorate of Veterinary Services, Kenya

Specifically the consultant will undertake the following tasks;

  • Identify (1) network of service providers, (2) prevailing gaps in the DVS laboratory referral system, (3) aspects of the referral system that needs to be improved, through a quantitative assessment survey of the existing laboratories, to address four important aims considered critical to ensuring a high-quality sample transport and referral system: (1) effectiveness (2) efficiency, (3) safety, and (4) timeliness.

  • Make recommendations on mitigation measures (corrective measures) in the laboratory sample referral and transport system at the DVS

  • Write and deliver a completion report to FAO and DVS

The scope of work may involve visiting selected Regional Investigation Laboratories (RVILs) located in Nakuru, Nyeri and Eldoret

Minimum Requirements

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

  • Good skills in design of cross-sectional surveys, data collection methodologies and analytical skills

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

  • 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.