PHIA Laboratory Advisor Non-profit Job Careers - ICAP at Columbia University

Organization: ICAP at Columbia University
Duty Station: Kampala, Uganda

About Us:
ICAP at Columbia University is an international non-profit organization that aims to ensure the wellness of families and communities by strengthening health systems around the world. In partnership with the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), ICAP will conduct Population-based HIV Impact Assessments (PHIA) in specific PEPFAR-supported countries. Each PHIA will define the status of the national HIV epidemic, guide allocation of resources based on evidence, and integrate capacity building of country stakeholder:, in the design, conduct, analysis, and use of PHIAs. ICAP, in partnership with the Ministry of Health (MoH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is planning to conduct a PHIA to estimate the population-level impact of the national HIV prevention, care and treatment programs in Uganda. In addition to providing important programmatic information to the MoH and relevant stakeholders, this assessment of the national HIV program is of great value to HIV researchers and public health experts around the world.

Job Summary: The PHIA Laboratory Advisor will be in charge of ensuring PHIA-related lab activities are carried out according to the study protocol and SOPs to achieve quality laboratory results. In addition, the incumbent will also work with the various laboratory sections to ensure international accreditation standards are adhered to. The jobholder will be responsible for analyzing quality control data, PHIA-lab data and providing reports both written and orally as regularly to PHIA co-investigators and UVRI management.

Key Duties and Responsibilities: 
Quality Management:
  • Offer support and ensure proper implementation, including documentation, of the quality management system at UVRI according to international accreditation standards, including CAP
  • Write clear and accurate technical procedures and ensure consistency between study protocol, laboratory documents and workflow processes
  • Ensure quality control is performed, logged and analyzed to ensure acceptable levels of analytical performance for HIV-related laboratories and effectively communicate findings both verbally and in written reports
  • Troubleshoot and resolve technical and quality-related issues and implement process improvements as needed
  • Mentor and train laboratory staff within UVRI in good quality management practices
PHIA Activities:
  • Work in close collaboration with other team members, receive and perform quality check of survey specimens from satellite labs
  • Log specimens into the laboratory data management system (LDMS)
  • Support use of LDMS and specimen storage management in order to train other PHIA lab staff and to troubleshoot as needed
  • Support HIV serology testing in order to perform QA/QC testing as needed on PHiA samples
  • Ensure correct PHIA specimens are tested for viral load (plasma and DBS samples), EID DNA PCR, and HIV incidence testing in a timely manner as outlined in the study protocol
  • Review all PHIA laboratory results, including quality control data, for validity and turnaround time and report results to study co¬investigators
  • Prepare and ship specimens for HIV drug resistance and ARV testing to collaborating laboratories in consultation with PHIA country lab advisor
  • Carry out periodic quality assurance checks in LDMS and freezers for stored PHIA specimens at UVRI
  • Keenly monitor all laboratory supplies needed for testing for PHIA samples and communicate stock needs to ICAP country and regional staff
  • Coordinate regularly with the satellite lab staff, the ICAP lab advisor and others to ensure QA/QC reagents and supplies are replenished at the satellite labs for field and laboratory staff
  • Actively participate in the PHIA survey trainings for field staff and laboratory staff
  • Perform additional activities as requested by ICAP in-country and regional lab advisors, and headquarter lab advisor

Qualifications, Skills and Experience: 
  • The ideal candidate should hold an MSc or PHD in Microbiology/immunology/lab technology
  • At least five years of experience
  • Previous exposure and experience working in an internationally accredited laboratory and implementing accreditation standards, including SOPs, document management, and quality improvement processed
  • Previous experience in HIV serology testing, including HIV rapid tests and other confirmatory tests
  • Prior experience in HIV serology QC and proficiency testing techniques and data analysis
  • Previous experience in molecular testing (HIV viral load and EID DNA PCR), including QA/QC procedures
  • Experience in point-of-care CD4 testing, including QA/QC procedures
  • Prior experience with LDMS or similar LIMS for specimen management
  • Previous experience working on laboratory-related activities in a major household survey with multiple organizations as stakeholders

How to Apply: 
All suitably qualified and experienced candidates should send their applications, including a detailed Curriculum Vitae (CV) and cover letter to:

ACLAIM Africa Ltd,
Plot M99 Nakasero Hill Lane,
P.O Box 7202 Kampala, Uganda

E-mail to:

NB: Please indicate position being applied for in the subject line and do not attach certificates

Deadline: 8th July, 2016.

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