WHO-Technical Officer – Mental Health and Psychosocial Support-P4-Cox Bazar Bangladesh

Location: Cox Bazar, Bangladesh, Bangladesh
Date Posted: 12-12-2017
Position Title:                           Technical Officer – Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS)
Grade:                                       P4
Duty Station:                            Cox Bazar, Bangladesh
Organization:                           HQ/
WHE WHO’s Health Emergencies Programme
First Level Supervisor:           Health Operations Team Lead

1.Background and Justification

  • Purpose of the Position:
In the context of the WHO Health Emergencies Incident Management System (IMS), at the country level, the incumbent will strengthen the ability of the country to scale up prevention and treatment of mental, neurological, substance use disorders and promotion of mental health with particular focus on affected population.

2.Job Description

  • Objectives of the Programme and of the immediate Strategic Objective
The mission of WHO’s Health Emergencies Programme (The Programme) is to help countries, and to coordinator international action, to prevent, prepare for, detect, rapidly respond to, and recover from outbreaks and emergencies.


Organizational context (Describe the individual role of incumbent within the team, focusing on work environment within and outside the organization)

Reporting to the Team Lead, under the overall guidance of the Incident Manager, and in close collaboration with the respective technical leads in the respective regional office and HQ, the Technical Officer will be accountable for the effective management and provision of expert advice for the application and adaptation of WHO, Sphere Project and Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC)  policies and strategies in the areas of Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS). S/he will have the overall responsibility for coordinating operations to ensure the timely delivery, effective and efficient implementation of the activities, to achieve the best attainable health status for the populations that WHO serves. The incumbent will work with multiple players including the national health authorities, other public sector ministries, emergency and development partners, UN agencies, civil society organizations and academic institutions.


Summary of Assigned Duties (Describe what the incumbent has to do to achieve main objectives; include main achievements expected):


During deployment, the duty station may change, and duties may be modified, based upon the technical needs of the Programme.


  1. Engage and coordinate with the international and national stakeholders (including  UN/NGO and civil society organizations) to:
    1. Facilitate and provide technical assistance in the assessment of mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) needs, resources and capacities.
    2. Support the development of a mental health service organization plan, with initial focus on:
      1. Promote a system based approach to integrate MHPSS in health and related social sectors, in coordination with relevant agencies and entities.
      2. Establish and lead Mental Health Working Group under the health cluster based on the interagency cluster approach for ensuring a coordinated response.
      3. Provide technical support to the Ministry of Health and other national entities/ institutions in building capacity in the MHPSS response at national level.
      4. Provide technical advice to partner civil society organizations and other entities, as appropriate, on the issues related to instituting a robust MHPSS programme.
      5. Contribute to the mobilization of adequate and sustained resources for the development and implementation of MHPSS activities.
  2. Facilitate the development of community-based mental health services.
  3. Contribute to the development of secondary and strengthening of specialist level psychiatric services.
  4. Provide technical guidance to develop, implement and monitor the integration of mental health in the primary health care.
  5. Co-develop, in coordination with national stakeholders, surveillance and monitoring systems for mental, neurological and substance use disorders (MNS).
  6. Draft and revise technical documents, briefing notes, meeting reports, information products and content, as appropriate.
  7. Oversee the overall timeliness and quality of all programme deliverables, the finalization of operational transactions in accordance with the MPSS operational workplan, assure compliance with WHO rules and regulations, and efficiently deliver related services/products within the country.
  8. Perform any other related incident-specific duties, as required by the functional supervisor.

3.Recruitment Profile

Expert knowledge of:
  1. International policy frameworks (WHO, Sphere, IASC) for reduction of public health challenges related to mental health in emergency settings.
  2. Implementation tools (e.g., WHO/United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) MHPSS assessment toolkit, psychological first aid field guide, mhGAP Humanitarian Intervention Guide, mental health component of Interagency Emergency Health Kit (IEHK), “Building Back Better” casebook) for reduction of public health problems related to mental health in (post-) emergency settings.
Demonstrated ability to:
  1. Plan and conduct capacity-building activities in MHPSS.
  2. Work effectively in an emergency and humanitarian response context, under constraints and meet deadlines.
  3. Collaborate on MHPSS across different sectors.

Education Qualifications

* Essential
Advanced university degree (Master’s level or above) in psychiatry, clinical, psychology, social work or allied sciences from an accredited/recognized institute.


Post-graduate qualification or specialized training in (a) public health (b) clinical psychology or psychiatry and/or (c) MHPSS in emergency and humanitarian crises.

* Essential

At least seven years of relevant experience, at the national and international levels, in the assessment, development and implementation of policies, strategies and action plans for MHPSS in the context of emergencies. Experience in capacity building, developing and promoting collaborative partnerships.


  1. Experience of  managing national mental health programme(s) including experience with implementing WHO’s mental health Gap Action Programme (mhGAP).
  2. Training in delivering bio-psychosocial interventions for MNS disorders.
  3. Relevant work experience in WHO, other UN agencies, relevant nongovernmental, health cluster partners or recognized humanitarian organizations.

4.Use of Language Skills

Excellent knowledge of English or French (depending on the country of assignment). Working knowledge of another WHO official language would be an asset (depending on the country of assignment).


Other Skills (e.g. IT)

Knowledge of Microsoft Office software applications.
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