Operations Lead, Emergency Health Unit

Job Type

Full Time




District of Columbia
United States



Save the Children’s Emergency Health Unit (EHU) is designed to enhance and expand Save the Children’s life-saving work in acute emergencies, including disease outbreaks, with a focus frontline health, nutrition and WASH programming. The EHU initiates direct health response within 3 days of a declared emergency, creating the space for in-country response teams to focus on longer term response planning and scale up. Responses will be based on Save the Children’s core public health approach, covering the biggest childhood killers, including public health outreach, coupled with direct clinical care, including primary and secondary health, with surgical capacity.

EHU programming will increase the early impact of Save the Children responses, saving more children’s lives and increasing donor confidence to raise funds for immediate and longer term work. The EHU aims to reach at least 1.5 million people directly and leverage $100m during the period of Save the Children’s new strategy (2016-18).

The EHU consists of a central team, based in the UK, and standing EHU response teams who are equipped to deliver response modules. Save the Children US will be managing one Primary Health Team of 7 people, including clinical, WASH and Logistics specialists who are able to mobilize responses in line with the outpatient modules. Each EHU Team will deploy 2-3 times per year for a period of 3 months, enabling a smooth transition to the longer term response. Team members working for the SCUS EHU team may be based globally and must be ready to deploy with the team when an emergency strikes.

The Team Leader for the Outpatient/Primary Health Response Team will manage the daily operations of one holistic rapid response outpatient/primary health team, including supervision and personnel management of a seven member team, oversight of quality service delivery, representation of the team’s work with broader country/response team, and coordination with the country health lead, Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) and health cluster.

What You’ll Be Doing (Essential Duties)

Emergency Response (60%)

  • Deploy to new emergencies at least half of the year and ensure provision of timely and high-quality services to affected populations.
  • Manage and lead EHU Team engaging in primary health care, immunization or diarrheal disease outbreak response. Primary oversight over operations, logistics, finance, security and HR for the EHU Team.
  • Monitor the performance of the EHU team through regular meetings review of Health Information System, project reporting systems and direct monitoring visits. Put in place accountability activities.
  • Assist in the development of an effective exit strategy and handover of EHU to country response team.


Emergency Preparedness (20%)

  • Support e-prep activities for priority countries in conjunction with supervisor, Head of EHU and Operations Manager, providing training, assistance in development of emergency preparedness plans, review of and prep for deployment scenarios and proposals.
  • Maintain engagement with ROs and COs and periodically follow-up on preparedness plans.
  • Prioritize and assign e-prep tasks to team members when not deployed.

Review of Program and Donor Compliance (10%)

  • Ensure appropriate reporting of the work of the unit meeting internal and donor requirements.
  • Ensure close review of humanitarian situation and beneficiary needs for designated program.

Internal and External Representation (10%)

  • Together with the country health team, represent the EHU with health cluster, MoPH, donors, SC members at project/ program level ensuring relevant information is effectively passed to the team and relevant program adaptations made.
  • Work with the country program to ensure the EHU program is integrated in to the overall humanitarian program and supports early recovery and long term plans.
  • Build effective relationships with peers and managers.

Required Qualifications

  • Experience of setting up emergency health programs from scratch in large scale emergencies including during first phase.
  • Substantial experience of humanitarian health management experience including strong knowledge of health cluster and humanitarian system.
  • Experience undertaking representational duties with WHO, donors and partners and MoH at project/ program level.
  • Good experience of security management in insecure environments.
  • Substantial experience of managing, training and supporting large teams.
  • Substantial experience of planning and managing budgets.
  • Ability to reflect on and learn from personal and program performance and act upon lessons learnt.
  • Strong communication skills, with excellent written and spoken English.
  • Able and willing to travel to remote and insecure locations for periods of time and at short notice.
  • Good experience of proposal development and donor report writing.
  • Demonstrated flexibility and ability to deploy to overseas locations at very short notice
  • Ability to work in and maintain a positive team dynamic in insecure environments
  • Demonstrated ability to work in a multi-cultural environment, and establish harmonious and effective working relationships both within and outside the organization
  • A minimum 5-7 years' experience in area of expertise
  • Bachelor’s degree required, advanced degree in relevant field preferred
  • Professional level of technical or managerial knowledge, skills, and experience to manage the operational activities of a unit or team, or provide the technical and management support related to various size programs, grants or projects.

Preferred Qualifications

  • MPH or clinic degree
  • Strong knowledge of Save the Children systems and ways of working.
  • Proficiency in a 2nd language such as French, or Arabic
  • Experience in setting up treatment centers/units in particular Cholera Treatment centers, Ebola/hemorrhagic fever and/or other infectious diseases.

What’s In It for You

  • Meaningful work, with a knowledge that you are changing the lives of children all around the world
  • A family friendly work environment
  • Highly collaborative and innovative teams
  • Generous paid vacation days, holidays, family leave days, and sick time
  • Healthcare plans including medical, dental, and life insurance
  • Retirement savings account with matching company contributions
  • Structured and formalized management development and coaching programs for mid and senior level managers
  • Extensive e-learning opportunities on a variety of topics offered through our affiliation with several prestigious universities as well as language learning opportunities

Save the Children believes every child deserves a future. In the United States and around the world, we give children a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. We do whatever it takes for children – every day and in times of crisis – transforming their lives and the future we share.

Save the Children is committed to conducting its programs and operations in a manner that is safe for the children it serves and helping protect the children with whom Save the Children is in contact. All Save the Children representatives are explicitly prohibited from engaging in any activity that may result in any kind of child abuse. In addition, it is Save the Children’s policy to create and proactively maintain an environment that aims to prevent and deter any actions and omissions, whether deliberate or inadvertent, that place children at the risk of any kind of child abuse. All our representatives are expected to conduct themselves in a manner consistent with this commitment and obligation. Any violations of this policy will be treated as a serious issue.

We provide equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and qualified applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, ancestry, sexual orientation, national origin, age, handicap, disability, marital status, or status as a veteran. Save the Children complies with all applicable laws.

Professional Level

None specified

Minimum Education Required

No requirement

How To Apply