Medical Anthropologist Advisor

Organization: Médecins Sans Frontières
Closing date: 25 Jun 2017


Médecins Sans Frontières is an international independent medical-humanitarian organization, which offers assistance to populations in distress, to victims of natural or man-made disasters and to victims of armed conflict, without discrimination and irrespective of race, religion, creed or political affiliation.

The MSF movement is built around five operational directorates supported by MSF’s 21 sections, 24 associations and other offices together worldwide. MSF OCBA is one of those directorates. The operations are implemented by field teams and the mission coordination teams; together with the organizational units based in Barcelona, Athens and decentralised in Nairobi, Dakar and Amman. The field operations are guided and supported by 5 Operational Cells, the Emergency Unit and other departments supporting Operations.


The Patient Safety and Dignity initiative is a key element of the *M*SF-OCBA Strategic Plan 2014-2017. Its ambition is to put the patients back at the centre of MSF action. This comes from a holistic view of the medical and humanitarian action, in which beneficiaries are not mere passive recipients of humanitarian aid, but active human beings whose individual rights and preferences should be taken into account. This initiative is being developed through a number of transversal projects, under the leadership of the Operations Department. One of the chosen priorities for 2017 is the project on Culturally Adapted Facilities.

This position is hierarchically accountable to the responsible of the Patient Safety & Dignity dossier (PS&D), with close collaboration with the Health Promotion, Community Engagement and Anthropology Technical Referent. (HPCEA) and the paediatric advisors.

Main Objectives of the post:

The main objective is to assess the perspective of patients attending MSF in-patient paediatrics services, through a medical anthropological analysis. Depending on the results of this study, we will consider which gaps are the most relevant for MSF to focus on, and how can these be addressed realistically.

We will be conducting this assessment initially in 2 locations (Mali and Sudan, although this may vary based on operational constraints).


Design, plan and conduct a medical anthropological study (in-depth qualitative study) to understand the current experience of sick children and their caretakers, being treated in an MSF paediatrics ward. This will include

· Literature review based on the requirements of this study

· Design methodology and questionnaires for interviews and FGD

· Explore/assess all the areas along the therapeutic path of patient and caretaker: decision-making (at community level), transport & access, reception & waiting, first consultation, eventual non-admission (and return home), admission to ward (IDP), consultations & treatment (IPD), eventual surgery or intensive care, eventual decease (information, mourning, transportation), discharge, return home, follow-up requirements (treatment, consultation).

· Explore/assess all the aspects of the medical-caretaker-patient interaction

· Within the hospitalisation (IPD ward), explore/assess the experience with all the support facilities and services that have direct contact with them,

· Evaluate and provide a measure of the importance of the different aspects identified,

· Consider and propose which elements should be considered a priority for an MSF intervention.

At the end of the assessment the following deliverables are expected:

· Presentation and feedback of first results to the Field team, Mission Coordination and HQ staff.

· Written report, including summary, findings and recommendations.


Education and experience:

  • Field experience with MSF an asset.
  • Significant experience in health promotion in humanitarian settings (preferably Africa and Middle East)
  • Medical background (preferably nurse)
  • Anthropology background (theoretical or practical)
  • Languages: One profile fluent in English, one profile fluent in French. Spanish, Arabic or Portuguese an asset.
  • Advanced user of Microsoft Office tools


  • Commitment to MSF’s Principles
  • Cross-cultural Awareness
  • Behavioural Flexibility
  • Stress Management
  • Analytical Thinking
  • Results and Quality Orientation
  • Service Orientation
  • Planning and Organising
  • Teamwork and Cooperation


· Temporal post based at the Médecins Sans Frontières-Spain Headquarters in Barcelona or one of the decentralized units (Dakar, Amman, Nairobi) with expected at least 50% of travel to the field

· Duration of 9 weeks for each assessment

· Full time job

· Annually gross salary based on MSF-OCBA Reward Policy will depend on where the position will be located: Barcelona, Amman, Nairobi or Dakar.

· Starting: one study to start asap (French mandatory) , second to start in the next 3 months

How to apply:

To apply, all applicants should please send their CV and cover motivation letter under the reference “**Anthropologist**” to:

Please submit your CV and cover letter in ONE file and name the file with your LAST NAME.

Replies will only be sent to short-listed candidates.

Médecins Sans Frontieres, as a responsible employer, under article 38 of “Ley de Integración Social del Minusválido de 1982 (LISMI)” invite those persons with a recognized disability and with an interest in the humanitarian area to apply for the above mentioned position.