Consultant for preparing the Recommendations on the parental/family visits and engagement in care for Maternities and Neonatal Intensive Care Units

Deadline for application: 
12 Oct 2019
Country(s) that the job is based in: 
Job type: 

Family-centred care is recognized as an important component of the quality of maternal and child care, including care during the delivery as well as throughout the treatment for pre-term and sick new-bornsin the neonatal intensive care units (NICU). The scientific evidence of theeffects of thepresence and engagement of a mother/father in the care of pre-mature and sick new-bornson child health and development is growing. This principle is integrated into WHO, UNICEF, and other international, European and national regulations, policies and standards that are addressing child rights in hospitals, quality perinatal care and nurturingcare for early childhood development. Nationally, these principles are among other documents explicitly recognised within the Law on patients-rights (“Official Gazette” No 45/2013 and 25/2019), National programme for Early childhood Development (“OfficialGazette” No 22/2016), National program for breastfeeding support and developmental care of a new-born(“Official Gazette” No 53/2018), Rulebook for accreditation of maternities and neonatology intensive care units (“Official Gazette” No 101/2016).

Despite existing advanced national policy framework for establishing the principles of family-oriented developmental care in NICUs and delivery units, open door policy for parental presence in NICUs is still the issue for number of hospitals, and presence of the partner during the delivery is not enabled in every maternity. In many cases, decisions are made based on out-of-date recommendations for active parents’ involvement in daily care of new-bornsin hospitals related with contextual epidemiological risks in a hospital setting. In order to support relevant national health institutions to ensure stimulatingand safe conditions for the smooth participation of family members during the child-birth and/or during the stay of the pre-term or sick new-bornsin the NICU, UNICEF Serbia seeks to engage an expert for providing evidence-based recommendations on the parental/family visits and engagement in care for Maternity and Neonatal Intensive Care Units that would take into consideration international/national standards and good practices as well as findings from the assessment of infection control practices in maternities and neonatal intensive care units for family members or designated support persons upon mother’s choice, and their presence during and after the delivery in maternities, as well aspresence and engagement of mother’s and other family members in the neonatal intensive care units with their new-borns.

Work Assignment Overview:

Informed by international and national standards on family-cantered care and international evidence-based practice on the treatment of mothers and new-borns during and after the delivery, the consultant will prepare a draft oftheprofessional national recommendation thatwillallow pregnant women/mothers and new-borns in health institutions in Serbia to be together (including in NICUs) and have the opportunity to be supported by family members/designated persons during and after childbirth, and throughout the treatment at the NICU,and even more take the active care of the new-borns through skin-to-skin contact and other stimulative practices parents should dowith their new-borns to support their health and development.

Duration of the assignment: up to 15 working days (October 2019 – December 2019)

Detailed task description:

1.Review international and national documents/legislation on practices in supporting fathers or designated family members/persons to support womenduring delivery, and together with mothers participate in supporting child care and development after delivery and within NICUs for premature and sick newborns.

2.Provide desk review on updated international, regional and national clinical guidelines, recommendations, legislation on infection controlin maternities and neonatology intensive care units.

3.Based on the desk reviews and selected interviews with relevant stakeholders, Prepare Draft Document -Visitors Guideline in maternities and NICUs with an explanation of reasons for their implementation and road map for its implementation in the hospital setting in Serbia that includes also potential need for regulatory changes and financial implications (max 10 pages).

4.Present the draft guidelines on the meeting with relevant professionals and representatives of key health care institutions (Ministry of Health, institutes for public health, maternities, NICUs) organised by MoH and UNICEF Office in Serbia, aimed to discuss the draft of Visiting Guideline in maternities and neonatal intensive care units and road map for its full implementation, and integrate the recommendations from the meeting into the final products.

Knowledge/Expertise/Skills required:

•Professional background: Medical doctor, Epidemiologist.

•Minimum five years of experience in clinical epidemiology.

•Excellent knowledge of the health system of Serbia.

•Experience in monitoring epidemiology situation and preventing hospital infections in the maternity wards and NICU.

•Experience in defining/monitoring hospital policies on preventing and controlling intra-hospital infections.

•Previous experience in working on child rights in hospitals and family cantered care is an asset.

•Fluency in English and Serbian language.

How to apply: Qualified candidates are requested to submit their application through:

The application must include a financial proposal in RSD as a separate document, providing the following information:

•Daily rate (all costs included e.g. health insurance, pension, usage of mobile phone).

The closing date for applications is 12th October 2019.

Important note: Incomplete applications will not be taken into consideration. Only short-listed candidates will be contacted. UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages qualified female and male candidates from all national, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities to apply

All details can be found here:


This project is funded by: