WHO Tripartite Joint Secretariat on AMR seeks consultant to develop multisectoral guidance

Dear All,

WHO continues on their streak of seeking support for their AMR-related work! Today we have a posting by the Tripartite Joint Secretariat on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) of a consultancy opening for an 11-month project that would support development of multisectoral guidance(s) on development and strengthening of the coordination mechanisms and governance structures for addressing AMR.

Full details are below my signature and you might also get some useful decoding of the acronyms and ideas behind this project by reviewing the 25 Aug 2021 newsletter entitled “WHO-FAO-OIE-UNEP Survey On A Multi-Stakeholder AMR Platform.”

The consultancy is EU-based, but at least some overlap with EU working hours would be required. The deadline for applications is 4 Nov.

Good work, Team WHO! It is certainly exciting to see the pieces coming together for global implementation of measures to address AMR.

All best wishes, –jr

John H. Rex, MD | Chief Medical Officer, F2G Ltd. | Operating Partner, Advent Life Sciences. Follow me on Twitter: @JohnRex_NewAbx. See past newsletters and subscribe for the future: https://amr.solutions/blog/. All opinions are my own.

Online Job Description
Contract Type: External consultancy
Contract start date: as soon as possible
Contract Duration: 11 months with possibility of extension subject to funding and satisfactory performance
Organization : WHO HQ/ AMR/ GCP Global Coordination and Partnership
Application deadline: 4 November 2021
Purpose of the consultancy
To provide technical support to the Tripartite Joint Secretariat on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) in the development of a guidance as well as provide advice to countries on the development and strengthening of the coordination mechanisms and governance structures for AMR. 
AMR is a global public health threat. It is driven by inappropriate use of antimicrobials in human health, animal and plant health, food production, and through environmental contamination, and as such requires a One Health approach to address it.  The Tripartite Joint Secretariat on AMR consolidates cooperation between the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), WHO and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) drawing on their core mandates to support the global response across the One Health spectrum through global advocacy and political engagement, creation of a shared vision and goals, and providing Secretariat services for global governance structures.

The consultancy is located within the Tripartite Joint Secretariat, which is hosted by WHO, and has dedicated liaison officers in FAO and OIE headquarters and works with UNEP. The Secretariat manages the day-to-day operations of the joint work of the Tripartite organizations on AMR including the Multi-Partner Trust Fund (MPTF). The Tripartite has developed a Strategic Framework that sets the vision and objectives of the collaboration for the next five years. The Framework will be launched in November 2022.  A related workplan is being developed that will set the deliverables for the next biennium. 

Analysis of country experience suggests that having an effective multisectoral coordination mechanism is very strongly associated with progress in the implementation of the national action plan.  Developing and sustaining such groups is however politically and practically challenging. This is true of many other health and development issues, and so there is a growing body of experience of what works in different contexts.  Successful approaches will need to be sensitive to context, politics and integrate with broader governance structures.  One size will not fit all, but there are principles and considerations that are widely applicable, and much scope for learning within AMR and within other fields that require collaboration across sectors.

There is an emerging academic literature on multisectoral governance and significant practical country experience. WHO has also published guidance documents on coordination and implementation of AMR National Action Plans and  multisectoral coordination is also covered in the Tripartite Zoonoses guide.  There has also been work on establishing multisectoral coordination through the health in all policies framework, and for other issues such as non-communicable disease. The challenge however is not just to establish these groups but to ensure that they are functional and deliver more coordinated responses and there are appropriate systems and structures to ensure commitment and accountability.

The Tripartite and UNEP have recently developed a Joint strategic framework that will shape their collaborative work for the next few years. Supporting countries to develop country-owned sustainable multisectoral governance to ensure effective and balanced national AMR responses is one of the objectives and it is anticipated that this consultancy will contribute to the delivery of this work.  This initial focus of this work will be through countries that are being funded through the AMR MPTF. This fund was established in 2019 and provides funds to allow the Tripartite to support the One Health approach in eleven low and middle-income countries. 
Deliverable 1
Review of existing guidance on One health and multisectoral frameworks for coordination and oversight and relevant academic literature.  Expected by end of February 2022. 

  • Review and consolidation of existing guidance on multisectoral frameworks;
  • Work with relevant teams from FAO, OIE and UNEP to review individual organisations guidance on AMR National Action Plan coordination and governance; 
  • Review country experience (TRACSS analysis, literature reviews, country implementation reviews, etc.) and relevant academic literature. 

Deliverable 2
Prepare a report on the use of the Health in All Policies framework to support multisectoral governance in selected pilot countries. Expected by end March 2022. 

  • Work with other teams and colleagues in WHO and Tripartite organisations to review guidance on multisectoral coordination on other strategic areas to develop a coherent approach that reflects AMR specific issues (e.g. zoonoses, Health in All Policies, NCDs); 
  • Support pilots of this approach at country level. 

Deliverable 3
Prepare a report on the experience and lessons learnt on multisectoral governance in MPTF countries. Expected by December 2022.   

  • Identify the needs interests and priorities of MPTF countries for support in enhancing and strengthening governance structures.
  • Provide advice and signpost to countries relevant tools and evidence 
  • Facilitate collaboration between MPTF countries  and the piloting of tools where appropriate. 
  • Manage an action learning set/community of practice of interested countries on optimal approaches to coordination in different contexts.
  • Synthesize results. 

Deliverable 4
Update the section in the AMR National Action Plan implementation handbook on multisectoral governance. 

  • At least ten years of relevant experience on governance and accountability mechanisms at regional and national levels, incorporating multisectoral and multidisciplinary approaches. 
  • At least ten years of working experience in or with developing /resource poor countries.

Desirable: Experience working with WHO, FAO, OIE or UNEP.
Skills/ Knowledge

  • Knowledge of AMR or other One Health issues;
  • Excellent writing skills;
  • Ability to work under pressure with conflicting priorities;
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills;
  • Computer literacy and experience in organizing and managing virtual meetings and consultations.  

Expert knowledge of English
The consultant is expected to be engaged routinely with colleagues during the working hours for European time zones.
Pay band level C: USD 10,000 to 12,500 per month

Current funding opportunities (most current list is here):

  • The AMR Action Fund is now open to proposals for funding of Phase 2 / Phase 3 antibacterial therapeutics. Per its charter, the fund prioritizes investment in treatments that address a pathogen prioritized by the WHO, the CDC and/or other public health entities that: (i) are novel (e.g., absence of known cross-resistance, novel targets, new chemical classes, or new mechanisms of action); and/or (ii) have significant differentiated clinical utility (e.g., differentiated innovation that provides clinical value versus standard of care to prescribers and patients, such as safety/tolerability, oral formulation, different spectrum of activity); and (iii) reduce patient mortality. It is also expected that such agents would have the potential to strongly address the likely requirements for delinked Pull incentives such as the UK (NHS England) subscription pilot and the PASTEUR Act in the US. Submit queries to contact@amractionfund.com.
  • INCATE (Incubator for Antibacterial Therapies in Europe) is a newly launched early-stage funding vehicle. Details are still coming into focus, but per comments on 25 Aug 2021 at the BIOCOM conference, their goal is to support ~4 companies per year with about $250k/company. Contact details are on their website (https://www.incate.net/).
  • CARB-X recently announced that their existing resources will be reserved to fund their existing portfolio (more than 80 total awards, and counting, as they include contracting from prior rounds). New rounds from CARB-X will occur only after new funding is obtained in 2021.
  • It’s not a funder, but AiCuris’ AiCubator offers incubator support to very early stage projects. Read more about it here.
  • The Global AMR R&D Hub’s dynamic dashboard (link) summarizes the global clinical development pipeline, incentives for AMR R&D, and investors/investments in AMR R&D.
  • In addition to the lists provided by the Global AMR R&D Hub, you might also be interested in my most current lists of R&D incentives (link) and priority pathogens (link).

Upcoming meetings of interest to the AMR community (most current list is here):

  • 2 Nov 2021 (virtual, 8-9.30a US East Coast, noon-1.30p London, 1-2.30p Paris, 9-10.30p Tokyo): Pfizer-sponsored webinar entitled “The Global AMR Crisis: Is the scale of the action matching the scale of the threat?” With speakers including Hanan Balkhy (WHO), Ramanan Laxminarayan (CDDEP), Hon. Yasuhisa Shiozaki (multiple Cabinet-level roles in Japan’s government, Prof. Lothar H. Wieler (President, Robert Koch Institute), David Paterson (Director, U Queensland Centre for Clinical Research), Kevin Outterson (CARB-X), and me, this event will (i) discuss how the right incentives can simultaneously stimulate both improved patient access as well as innovation in anti-infectives and (ii) provide practical frameworks to support implementation of national action plans. Don’t miss this one! Go here to register!
  • 15-17 Nov 2021 (virtual, timings TBD but would expect global coverage): 3rd Call to Action on Antimicrobial Resistance: “Sharing evidence and best practice to empower national action.”
    • Building on the success of the previous Call to Action on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) conferences held in Berlin (2017) and Ghana (2018), the governments of Denmark, Colombia, Ghana and Zambia, with the International Centre for AMR Solutions (ICARS), UN Foundation, UNICEF, and the Wellcome Trust, are together organising a follow-up event to advance the response to rising rates of drug-resistant infections.
    • Go here for an  expression of interest form; contact the organizers at AMRCalltoAction@wellcome.org for other details.
  • 18-24 Nov 2021: World Antimicrobial Awareness Week (WAAW), sponsored by WHO. The theme is “Spread awareness, stop resistance.” Go here for details.
  • [NEW] 1 Dec 2021 (virtual, 9a-1p UK): Westminster Health Forum policy conference “Tackling antimicrobial resistance in the UK and the UK’s role on the global stage.” Chaired by Kevin Hollinrake MP (Co-Chair, All-Party Parliamentary Group on Antibiotics, APPG-Antibiotics) and Professor the Lord Trees, Emeritus Professor, U Liverpool; and Treasurer, APPG-Antibiotics, this 5-h session includes keynotes from Dame Sally Davies and Haileyesus Getahun (WHO) and speakers spanning the UK’s AMR efforts. Go here to register.
  • 3 Dec 2021 (Boston, in person, 9a-6.30p, COVID vaccination required): 8th annual BAARN (Boston Area Antimicrobial Research Network) meeting. Go here for details; registration link is here.
  • 3 Dec 2021 (virtual, US daytime timings): Symposium entitled “Advances in Antibacterial Discovery” sponsored by the St. Jude Department of Chemical Biology and Therapeutics, is a part of the broader Bringing Chemistry to Medicine series and is supported by the St. Jude T32 Infectious Disease Therapeutics training program. Go here for details and to register.
  • 3-6 Mar 2022 (Albuquerque, New Mexico): Biannual meeting of the MSGERC (Mycoses Study Group Education and Research Consortium). Details are here.
  • 6-11 Mar 2022 (Il Ciocco, Tuscany): Gordon Research Conference entitled “New Antibacterial Discovery and Development”. Go here for details, go here for the linked 5-6 Mar Gordon Research Seminar that precedes it.
  • 7-8 Apr 2022 (Basel and in person, we hope): The 6th edition of the annual AMR conference sponsored by the BEAM AllianceCARB-X, the Novo REPAIR Impact Fund, the IMI Accelerator, and the European Biotechnology Network. Go here for the hold-the-date page and a way to be kept informed about the meeting. 
  • 9-13 May 2022 (Athens and online): 40th Annual Meeting of the European Society for Paediatric Infectious Diseases, Go here for details.
  • 20-24 Sep 2022 (New Delhi): 21st Congress of the International Society for Human and Animal Mycology (ISHAM). Go here for details.
  • 25-28 Oct 2022 (Stellenbosch, South Africa): The University of Cape Town’s H3D Research Centre will celebrate its 10th anniversary with a symposium covering the Centre’s research on Malaria, TB, Neglected Tropical Diseases, and AMR. Go here to register.


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