Belgium: ITC-UniData Medical Assistant and Data Steward

Organization: Médecins Sans Frontières
Country: Belgium
Closing date: 11 Sep 2017


Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an international, independent, medical humanitarian organisation that delivers emergency aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, healthcare exclusion and natural disasters. MSF offers assistance to people based only on need and irrespective of race, religion, gender or political affiliation.

MSF International is the legal entity that binds MSF’s 21 sections, 24 associations and other offices together. Based in Geneva, MSF International provides coordination, information and support to the MSF Movement, as well as implements international projects and initiatives as requested. MSF International also provides administrative support to the MSF Access Campaign.


The International Technical Coordination ITC was originally created to maintain consistency in the choice of medical and non-medical articles between MSF sections in order to improve MSF interventions, while taking into account field realities. Proposed and developed by the logistics and medical departments, ITC was officially recognised at International level in 1994 and integrated into MSF International in 2006.

ITC core role is coordinating the expression of the demand of articles (medical and non-medical) and ensure it is properly translated for supply whose role is to fulfil that demand. The role of ITC is to coordinate decision making, to inform and advise decisional bodies but it is not responsible for taking decisions.

In 2016, UniData was implemented, which is the unique central article database of MSF that contains all the codes created in MSF, avoiding duplication, improving the articles description. Therefore it provides visibility on the expression of the demand and helps streamlining supply chain processes. UniData details all items available for the field and shares article changes with the Movement. It contains all standard and non-standard articles with their descriptions. UniData shares this article information with all relevant MSF staff and systems including the field.

The position of the ITC medical assistant is a position at the ITC in Brussels, to support the work of the ITC medical referent and medical data steward coordinator. The assistant should help to maintain the medical standards through contacts with the working groups, the QA coordinators, the ESC referents and resulting by the final validation by the medical directors.

With the new UniData platform the medical assistant is also a data steward in charge of checking the non standard articles in UniData: for the correct coding (code and labels) as well as the technical sheet.


The ITC medical assistant reports directly to the ITC Medical Coordinator.


The objective of the position is to help the ITC medical referent is to improve the quality of the medical catalogues with the follow-up of the creation of new standard articles, starting from the request form up to the publication of the technical sheet in the catalogue.

The second objective is to maintain the data quality of the articles and descriptions in UniData for standard an non standard articles. ITC is responsible for the creation and description of the codification rules as well as the application of those rules standard articles, and also non standard articles in UniData.


UniData data steward role:

  • Formalize, enforce and improve rules for the creation of medical articles, codes, labels and descriptions according the data governance system, with the input of ESC data-owners.

  • Follow-up on outstanding questions/feedbacks regarding medical articles with the relevant referents and adapt the codes, labels and/or codification rules when needed.

  • Be the contact point for ESC data-owners and OC working group members for any request of code creation or extraction of information from UniData.

  • Check and validate the medical article creations in UniData following the codification rules

  • Review and check the quality of the medical Master Data on a regular basis, check if the medical information abides to the specified rules. Assure that corrections in codes, labels and other attributes are made when needed to guarantee uniformity.

  • Contribute to improvements in UniData.

  • Elaborate and process the workflows in UniData

Article descriptions (reporting to the International Medical Coordinator)-

  • Ensure that standard descriptions (technical sheets) are created, validated and maintained

  • Motivate the OC referents to write technical sheets for non- standard articles under their responsibility.

  • Follow-up on outstanding questions or feedbacks regarding the descriptions with relevant referents.

  • Edit and check the paper an digital versions of the catalogue

Maintain medical standards

  • Gather all requests for new articles, changes or deletions (from field, from procurement centers, from WG….)

  • Identify the articles assortment under the responsibility of the WG and request annual review

  • Organize the communication between medical supports of all MSF sections by permanent exchanges, and dispatch the requests/proposals to IWG and/or relevant contacts

  • Assist and bring up the issues to the international meetings of the medical WG (15)

  • Ensure all necessary information is collected (promote the use of the standard document for request) and do some bibliographic research (medical devices: existing norms…)

  • Organize the meetings with medical material/ biomedical / laboratory product meeting groups: inform procurement units and technicians about proposals of IWG groups to compile the technical information and supply possibilities. Stimulate the collaboration between MSF procurement centers on researching agreements on medical articles.

  • Edit any medical lists on requests of a WG, contact group or OC

  • Assisting the medical coordinator in writing and dispatching the yearly summary of changes for the medical items

Coherence of the medical catalogues

  • Guarantee the coherence between the medical catalogues and some MSF guidelines – particularly “Essential drugs” and “The clinical guideline”, by following the new editions

  • Check the links on the keywords in the catalogues and the guides (web and other digital media)



Para-medical background: nurse or midwife

Work experience

  • At least 6 months experience with MSF in the field.

  • Knowledge of the MSF catalogues and guidelines

  • Work experience in one of the OCs or supply centres is an asset.

Specific skills

  • Computer skills are essential

  • Fluent in both English and French (reading and writing)

  • Technical writing capacities

  • Strong communication (diplomacy) and organizational skills

How to apply:

Starting date: As soon as possible

Contract: Fixed-term at 50%

Location: Brussels, Belgium

Deadline for applications: 11 September 2017

Please submit your application only by email to: indicating “**ITC Medical Assistant**“ in the title.

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

-Only short-listed candidates will be contacted-