Humanitarian Pharmacy Adviser

from UK-Med
Closing date: 04 May 2017

Job Title: Humanitarian Pharmacy Adviser

Reports To: Operations Manager & Medical Director

Responsible For: Pharmacy Working Group of the UK EMT

Organisation Unit: UK EMT programme, UK-Med

Start Date: June 2017

End Date: 31st December 2018 (with possible extension in line with grant funding)

Salary: To be agreed depending on experience

Hours: Part time - 0.5 of a full time equivalent

Days to be agreed with occasional weekend working required

Note: This is a deployable post and the Pharmacy Adviser will be required to support the UK EMT with any overseas deployments


UK-Med & Humanitarian Conflict Response Institute (HCRI)

UK-Med supports education and training for health workers in developing countries and facilitates the provision of UK health care workers who volunteer their services to countries during conflict and catastrophe. UK-Med was established in 1995 to facilitate the provision of health workers from across the UK to support the hospitals in Sarajevo during the Balkans war. Subsequently it has deployed teams to a range of countries and crises including Cape Verde, China, Gaza, Haiti, Indonesia, Jordan, Kosovo, Pakistan, the Philippines and Sierra Leone.

UK-Med has a Memorandum of Understanding with the Humanitarian and Conflict Institute (HCRI) at The University of Manchester where the team is located and all posts are based.

UK-Med is contracted by the Department for International Development (DFID), until 2020, to support the UK Emergency Medical Teams initiative (UK EMT). The UK EMT is part of a wider global initiative to strengthen health responses in emergencies and consists of on-call teams of technical and operations staff capable of rapid deployments to sudden onset disasters and health crises. EMTs work under the guidelines of the WHO Classification and Minimum Standards for Foreign Medical Teams in sudden onset disasters. As part of this multi-partnership programme UK-Med works alongside Handicap International (HI), the Fire & Rescue Service (FRS) and DFID (please see the attached link that gives a snapshot of the UK EMT programme).

The Role

The Humanitarian Pharmacy Adviser will be a qualified professional with some experience of working in Low or /Middle Income Countries or with another humanitarian organisation, particularly in emergency health response. They will provide management and technical oversight to all activities relating to the pharmaceutical aspects of the UK EMT programme, with emphasis on the development of pharmaceutical support and operational mechanisms and systems required for preparedness and during an overseas deployment.

Representing UK-Med they will work closely with partners DFID, HI and the FRS providing technical support and input to the UK EMT in respect of preparedness, contingency planning, capacity building, stock management, policy development and clinical care within the clinical framework of the partnership, both in the UK and overseas.

They will provide technical guidance to other UK-Med team members including the Operations Manager, Health Advisers, Medical Logistician and the clinical peer working groups contributing to specific aspects of the programme and responsible for the continued development and preparedness of the UK EMT to WHO’s Global Registry Standards.

The post holder will also support the UK-Med training programme in the UK and overseas. They will take a pivotal role in developing strategic relationships with other NGO partners and will represent UK-Med and the UK EMT programme at national and international meetings as required.

Key Responsibilities

· Support the ongoing development of the UK EMT and the pharmaceutical component of the programme

· Lead the UK EMT pharmacy technical working group and provide oversight and support to the volunteer working group members

· Create and maintain robust and comprehensive documentation (assessments, protocols, and tools) relating to medicines management and pharmaceutical care in emergencies

· Set standards and provide advice to the UK EMT and our partners in clinical pharmacy; including treatment protocol development, medicines selection, formulary management, administration and prescribing guidance, dispensing protocols and patient information

· Provide technical advice and sign off on pharmaceutical procurement; including supplier selection, tender committee support and quantification of pre-positioned stocks

· Contribute to building pharmaceutical emergency preparedness planning; including potential supply chains and an appraisal of their resilience and contingency stock management

· Provide technical advice to logistics partners in pharmaceutical supply chain management; including implementing minimum standards for storage, export/import, distribution, medicines management within healthcare facilities, healthcare waste management, controlled drug management

· Support the logistics team and supply chain in the management and coordination of supplies during an emergency; including goods in kind or donation assessments/management, partner/MoH/WHO Emergency Medical Team coordination, prioritisation of stock, software systems for commodity management e.g. the M-Management system

· Conduct regular audits in respect of GDPs: the layout of the warehouse, storage, product arrangement, reception, distribution, and transport, checking with the DFID procurement and supply team that recommendations are applied

· Ensure that all persons in the supply team are aware of the specificities of the medical items they handle by raising awareness and providing guidance on quality, sensitivity, specificity and storage conditions for the various products

· Coordinate and inform risk management of the pharmaceutical components of the programme

· Ensure implementation of tools, systems and oversight of healthcare governance and medicines management; including clinical competence, significant error and near miss reporting, audit, quality assurance and continuous improvement

· Contribute to the organisation and training of a pool of suitable and deployable pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and medical logisticians to participate in the UK EMT on-call team

· Supervise stock/pharmacy management during a deployment and maintain an overview of the stocks through analysis of the drugs real consumption in relation to the treatment protocols in force and the UK EMT medical activities/fields

· Write and contribute to reports, risk registers, work plans and business cases, as required by the UK EMT programme and UK-Med

· Represent the UK EMT and UK-Med at conferences and meetings, as required

· Active engagement and compliance with the UK EMT systems and procedures

· Support operational research, innovation and policy development

· Other tasks as might be required to ensure effective delivery of UK-Med projects and programmes of work

Essential Competencies, Skills & Knowledge, Experience and Qualifications


· Apply the required technical and professional expertise to the highest standards; promote and shares best practice within and outside the UK EMT and UK-Med

· Take effective, considered and timely decisions by gathering and evaluating relevant information

· Work collaboratively to achieve shared goals and thrive on diversity of people and perspectives; know when to lead and when to follow and how to ensure effective cross-partner working

· Communicate clearly and confidently with others to engage and influence; promote dialogue and ensure timely and appropriate messages, building confidence and trust

· Builds sustainable networks to support the work of the programme and the organisation

Skills & Knowledge

· Qualified and registered clinical pharmacist having worked within a secondary care environment, preferably with emergency response or humanitarian experience

· Capacity building and supervising clinical and logistical staff

· Awareness of the WHO Essential Medicines (Formulary) and National Drug Policies

· Policy development and preparing technical documents

· Strong organisational and leadership skills, complemented by sound management abilities

· Excellent interpersonal skills with track record in building successful relationships with a broad range of stakeholders and partners

· Excellent understanding of the humanitarian sector and emergency medical response

· Knowledge of the WHO Emergency Medical Teams programme

· Ability to plan and organise multiple tasks and multiple personnel, whilst still maintaining attention to detail, to produce results under pressure within short deadlines

· Excellent skills in writing, editing, formatting, research, negotiation and verbal communication

· Excellent team working skills

· A positive and flexible problem solving approach

· Excellent Microsoft Word, Excel and Power point skills


· Minimum of five years experience as a pharmacist or two years proven experience as a pharmacist with additional field/humanitarian experience

· Experience in managing teams of staff and/or volunteers

· Experience of working in collaboration with partners/stakeholders eg. WHO, national government, Ministry of Health in delivery of complex programmes

· Medical procurement, managing medical supplies and pharmaceutical supply chain management both

· Developing and providing training and supervision to others

· Willingness to undertake overseas travel and work in insecure areas


· Essential: Pharmacy Degree

· Desirable: Certificate in ‘Humanitarian Medical Logistics Practices’ e.g. Fritz Institute / CILT

The post holder will be required to familiarise themselves with UK-Med’s Equality and Diversity policies and to actively support these wherever possible.

The role is based within UK-Med’s main office. Remote working will be considered, with the caveat that the post holder will need to be desk based intermittently to support the DFID procurement team in London (Whitehall), plus maintaining a regular presence in Manchester. The post holder will also need to be available to deploy with the UK EMT at short notice as part of emergency response team to any sudden onset disaster, with an expected minimum time period during a deployment being three weeks.

How to apply:

Closing date: Thursday 4th May 2017 at 5pm

For an informal discussion about this post, in the first instance please email Rachel Fletcher, Health Adviser (Deployment & UK EMT) at

Applicants should apply by sending a current CV with full contact details. This should be submitted with a supporting letter of application addressing suitability for the post based on the criteria outlined in the Essential Competencies, Skills, Knowledge, Experience, and Qualifications section of this Job Description. To be submitted to

Applicants who live outside of the UK must be eligible for registration with the relevant UK licensing body.