Social Solutions

Senior Health Advisor

2 months ago(11/8/2017 10:48 AM)
# of Openings


Social Solutions International, Inc. is a Small Disadvantaged Business. Hispanic and woman-owned, Social Solutions emphasizes quality research and evaluation, training and technical assistance, and institutional support services. We are a mission-driven organization that believes that superior science can improve the world. Social Solutions is dedicated to the creation of social and health solutions to improve the welfare of underserved populations worldwide.


The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has contracted through Social Solutions International to recruit and hire qualified individuals for the following position:



Senior Health Advisor

United States Agency for International Development/ Technical Support (TS) Health/ Asia Bureau


Application Deadline:   Open Until Filled



General Description:

The Asia Bureau fields a small team that is responsible for backstopping 17 countries in Asia, providing technical support, particularly in urban health, health financing and governance and health systems to Missions. In addition, the health team in Asia sits on Country Teams managed by the Office of Country Support in the Global Health Bureau, the Agency’s Urban Working Group and other ad hoc groups as dictated by events, such as the Nepal Task Force to respond to the 2015 earthquake. This position is at a senior level and is expected to represent the Bureau in the inter-agency and global development circles, and provide thought leadership, particularly as it relates to the quantification of populations in urban slums and frames the Bureau’s work in transition.



The Asia Bureau is one of the smaller regional bureaus within USAID but it has a vibrant health portfolio, which is managed by the health team within the Office of Technical Support (Asia/TS).  The Office leads the Bureau’s strategic thinking in technical areas, reviews the performance of Bureau offices and programs, and advises Asia offices on the appropriate allocation of resources.  The Office serves as the Bureau’s principal point of contact and coordination on all substantive technical aspects of programs in sectors of assigned specialization.  

  • It helps Missions develop new country strategic plans,
  • Conducts periodic reviews of Mission program performance, and
  • Provides technical oversight of Mission programs.

Asia/TS makes recommendations for allocating Bureau resources among missions and prioritizes sector programs throughout the region.  Within the Office of Technical Support, the Health Team is responsible for providing technical input on all health related programs and matters in the region.  


The Health Team provides technical leadership and support to 17 USAID field teams across the region in implementing evidence-based interventions proven to save lives and reduce disease burden. While the scope of work covers traditional health sectors such as family planning, maternal and child health, infectious disease, nutrition, and health systems, we are also invested in navigating and managing complex adaptive systems, which better reflect the dynamism of Asia. The Health Team engages in cutting-edge programs that address gaps and unfinished agendas in health across Asia. Some areas of interest include:

  • Unacceptably high rates of neonatal and maternal mortality, along with persistent malnutrition and high levels of stunting, inconsistent with economic growth;
  • Implementation research studies on Universal Health Coverage in Indonesia and Burma. These efforts will provide policy makers and managers rapid cycles of information to strengthen countries’ paths to achieving Universal Health Coverage and provide lessons learned for other countries in Asia pursuing sustainable health financing schemes;
  • Leveraging the use of private sector funds and stewardship of care provided in the private sector to support the continuation of health sector activities in Kazakhstan and channel the robust private sector in India to help end preventable child and maternal deaths;
  • Ensuring that programs in middle-income countries are gradually phased out of receiving USAID funding using non-disruptive, sustainable practices which do not upend the gains made to date;
  • Using Political Economy Analysis as a tool to deepen contextual understanding of health problems and to illuminate different possible solutions;
  • Rapid urbanization and its impact on health in Asia through application of USAID’s 2012 Urban Strategy in the health sector and a proposed 2017 framework that will be generated by Asia TS;
  • The Global Health Security Agenda and the emergence of novel infections and drug-resistant strains of tuberculosis and malaria; and
  • Attending to equity in monitoring and planning health programs, going below the surface of national and sub-national indicators.


In addition to supporting Global Health priorities, the Asia Bureau provides technical assistance to countries that have not been designated as priority countries for the Global Health Bureau programming purposes, as is the case of work currently planned in Laos and Timor Leste with Asia Bureau funds.  One of the policies of the Health Team is to look at strategic future programming and to design research and interventions that will enable missions to keep abreast of and manage technical changes in the field. Included in this approach is consistent collaboration with colleagues in the Economic Growth sector, as well as Democracy Rights Governance. The Team also works closely with The Global Development Lab and the Global Health Bureau, as well as DCHA. Going forward, the expectation is to develop closer relationships with Bureau for Policy Planning and Learning and Bureau for Economic Growth, Education and Environment, key players in innovation and financing.


We have added an urban component to our programming, adapting the Agency’s 2012 Urban Strategy and the Policy, Planning, and Learning Bureau’s current implementation guide for urban programming due to the recent significant urban growth in the region and potential inequities among residents of urban slums as an area of concern. The first Urban Health Program managed by the team was awarded in September 2017 and we have been providing informal technical assistance to other regional bureaus that are engaged in moving their portfolios toward a more urban focus. The Team also works with interagency partners, such as the Department of Defense and Department of State, to support civilian-military partnerships, particularly when it comes to Global Health Security.


Key Duties:

  • Coordinate and organize transition indicators for the Asia Bureau and liaison with Global Health Bureau on their transition working group.
  • Participate in the bi-weekly policy meetings on Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance (PLGHA) and serve as the POC within the Bureau for all things related to this policy and family planning compliance practices.
  • Coordinate with the Health Systems Advisor and Global Health Bureau’s Technical Practice Group on Innovative Financing opportunities within the region.
  • Serve as a mentor to FSNs and other staff to build their technical skill sets.
  • Conduct statistical analysis to inform health priorities for the region, sub-region, and countries; using them to develop infographics and arguments for various programming options.

Develop private sector networks and serve as a facilitator to get private partners interesting in supporting ongoing portfolio initiatives. 


The Senior Health Advisor will be responsible for:


Developing and Implementing Multi-sectoral Approaches to Development:

  • Providing assistance to missions in developing strong strategies for leveraging public and private resources that achieve shared health outcome goals;
  • Exploring and promoting the use of contractual mechanisms that exist in within the Agency which can support adaptive programming including Gift Authority, Broad Agency Announcements, Global Development Partnerships, Development Innovation Accelerators, and Development Credit Authority;
  • Organizing opportunities with other operating units such as GH’s Technical Practice Group, The Lab, and Center for Innovation and Impact to learn how the Team may implement new ways of doing business within Agency policy;
  • Providing strategic thinking support to missions that includes analyses focused on Political Economy, sustainability, and urban poverty;
  • Lead the Health Team discussion on how to successfully transition programs from USAID assistance and serve as the POC within the Asia Bureau for the Global Health Bureau’s working group on transition;
  • Support the Health Team’s management of discrete programs being implemented by our implementing partners;
  • Develop and make recommendations to Asia Bureau leadership on the appropriate allocation of resources in a broad range of health investments in the Asia region; and
  • Support the Health Team in advocating for budget resources and strategic country programming, as necessary


Provide Technical Support to Field Programs:

  • Providing input to missions across Asia on the newly issued PLGHA, its impact on program design and the impact it may have on overall programming in the Asian context;
  • Monitoring and engaging in the community of practice on developments in urban health programming, particularly as it intersects with quantification of urban slum populations and equity;
  • Tracking new areas of development that can contribute to keeping the programming and portfolio on the cutting edge of development, bring up creative ideas for the team to explore doing business differently; and
  • Undertaking program designs, developing health office strategies, providing analyses that help set mission program direction, and using knowledge management strategies to keep field offices abreast of important technical and strategic developments in the Bureau and Agency.



Technical Training and Professional Development:

  • Together with the Asia Bureau Senior Governance Advisor and the Regional Development Mission for Asia Senior Technical Group Health Systems Advisor, develop adult learning courses which would serve as an opportunity for mission health officers to improve their knowledge and understanding of innovative financing activities, urban health, and transition among other topics;
  • Shape the content, present, facilitate, and otherwise participate in any organized training opportunity to ensure that health officers expand their skills;
  • Further the spread of Political Economy Analysis as a tool for developing programs as well as promoting systems thinking and the use of systems maps as tools for understanding the context and environment within which we work and identifying key leverage points in which programs should invest;
  • Facilitate sessions during the next Asia State of the Art (SOTA) Conferences, anticipated for October 2018; and
  • Select FSNs from within the Bureau’s Country Missions to provide mentoring and support to as a contribution to developing a workforce that can support the transition of USAID programming.


Country and Bureau Backstopping:

  • Backstopping assigned countries across the Bureau’s geographic range in activities such as participating in GH Country Team calls, working with Desk Officers, being the initial POC within the Bureau for the Country Health Team, contributing to routine reporting requirements and strategies or country plans that may be revised, as well as providing support to mission health teams on a temporary basis as necessary. Country assignments will most likely be the Central Asia Republics as well as India;
  • Contributing to the Bureau’s Performance Plan and Report, Health Implementation Plan and Portfolio Review, as necessary; and
  • Developing familiarity with the budget for health activities for the Health Team and across the region, including analyzing budget trends and how well budget allocations align with existing disease burdens and inequities.


Communication and Collaboration:

  • For each country backstopped, work closely to facilitate information sharing and collaborative work platforms among the Asia Bureau Desk Officer, mission health staff, Global Health Bureau staff, and any other appropriate staff in TS or in other Pillar Bureaus;
  • Coordinate with the US Department of State, US Centers for Disease Control and Surveillance, US Department of Health and Human Services, the Foreign Service Training Institute, the World Bank, the World Health Organization, and other multilaterals on country and region-specific issues;
  • Support TS in drafting formal memos and emails to different audiences to promote transparent and timely communication, which may include briefing papers for senior managers, talking points for conferences, informational memos for the field, and weekly health notes;
  • Collaborating with relevant Asia Bureau and Global Health Bureau staff to plan, participate, facilitate and present at international and domestic meetings, workshops and conferences dealing with health systems strengthening, urban, private sector engagement and publishing in peer-reviewed journals as appropriate and approved; and
  • Produce white papers, infographics, briefs, and data sheets for the Asia Bureau Front Office that tell the story of innovation with the health portfolio.


  • Master’s degree or higher in public health, health systems strengthening or a related social science field.
  • Minimum fifteen (15) years’ experience in public health with at least five (5) years’ experience in an international or resource-challenged setting.
  • Experience and familiarity with working in the Asian development context required.
  • Demonstrated ability in strategic planning and design, coupled with hands-on program management skills that show prior experience in taking ideas to actualization.
  • Demonstrated track record in creating public-private partnerships and engaging the private sector to help achieve shared development outcomes.
  • Experience working cross sectorally and bringing in advances from governance, urbanization, and financing to bear in supporting health programs.
  • Proven ability to apply innovative approaches, work independently and apply new methods to solve problems, while remaining efficient in a fast-paced, changing and challenging institutional environment.
  • Experience working with USAID Missions, other donor organizations, host country governments and non-governmental organizations, including universities and research bodies.
  • Ability to absorb and synthesize a broad range of information, including financial, regulatory, clinical, demographic, marketing and scientific information.
  • Excellent ability to communicate, influence and convince verbally and in writing. Understanding of the institutional processes that can promote communication.
  • Strong analytical skills and familiarity with data software such as Stata and Tableau, with the ability to turn data into compelling arguments for program investments and budget allocations.
  • Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to build relationships and communicate effectively with people of varied professional, educational and cultural backgrounds.
  • High degree of independent judgment, ingenuity and originality to interpret possibilities of program change because of shifting country context and changing economic and political scenarios.
  • Fluency in a foreign language is preferred
  • Ability to travel internationally.
  • US citizenship required.

Social Solutions International offer competitive salaries and comprehensive benefits. Please submit your resume online at


Social Solutions is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employers. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, protected veteran status, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity or any other characteristic protected by law.


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