Position title: National HIV Viral Load Laboratory Coordinator
Reports to: Assistant Director of Diagnostic Services – Ministry of Health
Duty Station: Ministry of Health– Dar es Salaam (with frequent field travel)
Job Summary: National HIV Viral Load (HVL) Laboratory Coordinatorwill serve as the focal point for coordination of the HVL activities. Under the supervision of the Director of Diagnostic Services, the National HVL Laboratory Coordinator will provide national coordination and technical support to ensure HIV viral load activity is operational in accordance to Tanzania Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly & Children (MoHCDGEC) standards, guidelines and protocols. To maintain continuous functionality of health laboratories to support clinical services for HIV care and treatment and other health problems. Specifically she/ he will focus on HIV viral load laboratory quality improvement using national and international laboratory standards and support all laboratory and non laboratory testing to the highest quality possible. The National HVL Laboratory coordinator will work in close collaboration with the Ministry of Health, National AIDS Control Program, Implementing Partners and other stakeholders to ensure the goals and objectives of the Ministry are achieved.
This position requires a person, who is capable of working independently, fully engaged, understands and is committed to implementing quality standards required of an accredited laboratory.
Provide technical advice for strengthening the national HIV viral load monitoring system
Work with MoH, NACP and Laboratory Partners to develop/review and update key HVL monitoring indicators, standard operating procedures (SOPs) and guidelines
Provides technical assistance to zonal PCR reference laboratories including regular and systematic observation of HVL testing procedures and on site supportive supervision and mentorship whenever required.
Builds capacity of Regional and District laboratory technologists (RTL and DTL) in providing ongoing mentorship and supportive supervision to laboratory and non-laboratory health care providers on HIV viral load testing and other parameters.
Participate in national quantification of HIV viral load reagents and consumables
Monitor HIV viral load equipments and reagents status and provide monthly updates from HVL testing laboratories
Builds capacity of laboratory health care providers in appropriate laboratory logistics management to ensure uninterrupted laboratory services across all HIV viral load implementing sites from health centres to regional facilities.
Supports laboratory staff to follow written Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for every aspect of pre-analytic, analytic and post-analytic phases of the HIV viral load testing process in the health systems of the country.
Ensures compliance to quality assurance standards based on national, ISO and other International standard requirements to all laboratories in the country.
Supports laboratory staff in HIV viral load involved sites to implement laboratory quality management system as per national laboratory policy.
Provides mentorship to laboratory staff and health care providers on performing quality laboratory services and interpretation of HIV viral load and other laboratory parameters if deemed vital.
Assists in the preparation and delivery of proficiency testing for EQA from external laboratories to in Country HIV viral load laboratory sites.
Conducts training programs/continue medical education appropriately to address gaps identified during supportive supervision.
Participate in relevant technical working group meetings especially laboratory partners meeting and provide technical advice on how to support the MoH in HVL monitoring
Provides technical assistance to facility level lab managers, Quality Officers and other lab staff including: establishing routine workflows; developing/refining SOPs, job aides, log books, and referral forms as needed; planning of lab activities to improve tests performance and decrease turnaround time; and developing and implementing an equipment maintenance program.
Facilitate implementation of efficient HIV viral load sample transportation and results delivery, as well as effective linkage between laboratories and clinical services.
Works closely with Ministry of health & THPS, regional, council and hospital management teams (RHMT, CHMTs, and HMTs) and other laboratory stakeholders to improve laboratory performance.
Performs any other duties as may be assigned from time to time from supervisors
Qualifications: Degree in medical laboratory science or equivalent from a recognized University. Any Postgraduate qualification is an added advantage
Experience: Minimum 5 years of clinical laboratory experience in molecular biology.
Skills and competencies:
Computer literacy with skills in Ms Office required
Must have knowledge and experience in national HIV viral load monitoring algorithms and national policies
Experience in working in the HIV field for at least 3 years is an added advantage
Experience in working with multiple stakeholders is an advantage
Effective time management skills
Effective verbal and written communication skills
Effective problem solving skills
Ability to work as part of a team and independently when required