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Added: Aug 13, 2013 5:48 amISSUANCE DATE: 08/13/2013
CLOSING DATE: 08/30/2013
SUBJECT: Solicitation for Personal Services Contractor (PSC) No. 45-2013
The United States Government, represented by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), is seeking proposals (Optional Form 612) from persons interested in the PSC services described in the attached.
Submissions shall be in accordance with the attached information at the place and time specified.
Any questions may be directed to Samuel Matthews, Contracting Officer, and Tatiana Rossova, Personnel Specialist, who may be reached at FAX No. 7-727-250-76-34/35/36,
Offerors should retain for their records copies of all enclosures which accompany their proposals.
The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) is providing the largest amount of resources for a single disease in history and seeks to achieve the goal of an AIDS-free world through expanding HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care to millions of HIV-affected people worldwide. It employs a multi-faceted approach to combat HIV/AIDS in more than 100 countries around the world.
The Central Asian Republics (CAR) President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) program is a regional program implemented by USAID, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and Peace Corps (in Kyrgyzstan). CAR PEPFAR receives funding at a regional level to support regional and/or country-specific activities across the Central Asian Republics -- Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. CAR PEPFAR submits an annual Regional Operational Plan outlining CAR activities and funding levels to the Office of the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator (S/GAC). Progress against regional program indicators and targets is reported to S/GAC.
The HIV epidemic in the Central Asian Republics is concentrated within most-at-risk populations (MARPs) that include injecting drug users or people who inject drugs (PWID), sex workers (SW), men who have sex with men (MSM), and incarcerated populations. Reported HIV prevalence among the general population, according to the UNAIDS 2012 World AIDS Day Report, is estimated at 0.2% in KZ, 03% in TJ, 0.4% in KG and 0.5% in UZ.
The region is also a key transit area in global heroin trafficking. Accordingly, the epidemic is predominantly driven by injecting drug use, concentrated in urban centers and along drug transport corridors from Afghanistan through Tajikistan (TJ), Uzbekistan (UZ), Kyrgyzstan (KG), and Kazakhstan (KZ). The United Nations Organization for Drugs and Crime (UNODC) estimates that up to 1% of adults are heroin users, and sentinel surveillance data indicate 70-80% of all drug users are IDU. HIV prevalence rates of PWID range from 4.2% in KZ to 17.6% in Tajikistan. Sentinel surveillance data of PWID found HIV prevalence as high as 34% in parts of UZ.
While injection drug use remains a predominant driver of the epidemic, sexual transmission, largely between PWID and their sexual contacts, appears to be playing an increasingly important role in the growth of the epidemic, with 2008 data from Ministries of Health (MOH) attributing up to 29% of HIV infection to sexual transmission. However, closer scrutiny of country MOH data suggests that the role of sexual transmission is overestimated, although clearly increasing. Nonetheless, unsafe sex by PWID and their sexual contacts, including sex workers (SW), constitutes a key bridge to the general population.
CAR countries are at varying points on the development continuum; however, all share the challenge of reforming inefficient and compartmentalized Soviet-era health care delivery systems into working health systems capable of meeting the needs of stigmatized and disenfranchised groups. Public health expenditures in all five countries are less than 3.3% of GDP, with TJ at 1%. Health systems inherited from Soviet times include vertical structures for HIV, tuberculosis (TB), STI, drug treatment, and blood transfusion services, with little or no coordination between them. Local governments have struggled with varying levels of success to build a truly cross-sectional response to the AIDS epidemic. Adding to this difficulty is the inherent distrust by CAR governments of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and the lack of government experience partnering with these new organizations. The stigma surrounding injecting drug use, punitive legislation, a broad range of policy constraints, and frequent rights violations of individuals within MARPs have delayed the adoption of appropriate interventions and continue to restrict access by MARPs to services.
With HIV highly concentrated among a small high-risk group, there is still an opportunity to stem the growth of the epidemic to the general population. But partners and governments must act quickly and decisively with interventions focused on stopping transmission within and by MARPs. Accordingly, the overarching goal of the regional program is to prevent new HIV infections, particularly among MARPs, and to provide high quality services for affected populations through strengthened and sustainable health systems. To achieve this goal, regional program activities aim to: improve access by MARPs to quality services; strengthen the capacity of institutions, individuals and systems to plan, manage and monitor a national AIDS program that provides improved services for MARPs; and enhance the collection, analysis and utilization of data to inform planning and policymaking. However, the optimal mix of interventions across the region and in any country, particularly as regards prevention, will be highly dependent on country-specific policy constraints and program issues.
The U.S. Ambassador to Kazakhstan, the Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM), or Embassy designate, serves as the lead for the CAR regional PEPFAR program, coordinating with Ambassadors across other CAR countries to make final decisions on CAR PEPFAR Operational Plans and other programs submitted to the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator for approval. At the country level, the Ambassador, DCM or Embassy designate heads the in-country PEPFAR program and is the final decision-maker under PEPFAR Guidance on all program plans and activities that are submitted to the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator for approval.
B) Basic Function of the Position
1) The PEPFAR Coordinator serves as the primary point of contact and coordinator of activities related to the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (the Emergency Plan/PEPFAR) in the region. S/he plays a critical role in the development and complementarity of the Mission's inter-agency HIV/AIDS program, and in coordinating planning, implementation, and reporting on program performance of inter-agency programs.
2) The coordinator serves as the Ambassador/DCM's primary point of contact on PEPFAR activities and advises them on all related developments and issues related to the PEPFAR program. S/he works closely with all USG agencies involved in HIV/AIDS programming in Central Asia and contributes to the five countries' national HIV/AIDS strategies, facilitating a coordinated USG response in collaboration with other donor groups and implementing partners in the region. The coordinator is, in general, not a technical director but, based on a comprehensive knowledge of proven technical approaches and concerns in addressing the HIV/AIDS epidemic, is expected to provide technical leadership and contribute to technical recommendations on implementation based on the Country Operational Plan (COP) and other performance review information.
3) The Coordinator chairs the regional interagency team which is comprised of senior Agency representatives and regional and country HIV/AIDS staff. The role of the regional team is to establish program technical, policy and strategic direction for implementation of the Emergency Plan in Central Asia. This includes compliance with the guidelines and earmarks set by OGAC, collaboration and congruence with the programs of major donors, such as the Global Fund on AIDS, TB and Malaria (GFATM) and with the priorities of host governments. When delegated this authority by the Ambassador, the coordinator may represent PEPFAR with external partners including governments in the region, the press, and others. The Coordinator may also represent the implementing agencies at official meetings if so delegated by the Ambassador, DCM and/or agencies.
4) The Coordinator is the technical and program lead for the development of the Regional Operational Plan (ROP), the Semi-Annual Program Results (SAPR) report, Annual Program Results (APR) report, and other reports required by PEPFAR. The Coordinator is responsible for ensuring that reports are submitted to Washington in time, for organizing the logistical arrangements for inter-agency work, and for keeping Agencies on task for inter-agency efforts. The Coordinator is responsible for bringing any issues affecting interagency planning to the Ambassador/DCM and, if necessary, to OGAC.
Areas of responsibility for the PEPFAR Coordinator's position include but are not limited to:
1) Planning and Implementation (35%)
2) Communication and Cooperation (35%)
3) Monitoring and Evaluation and Reporting (30%)
D) POSITION ELEMENTS
1) Administrative and Supervisory Controls: The Central Asia Regional PEPFAR Coordinator will work under the leadership of the U.S. Ambassador to Kazakhstan, or his or her designate, as part of the USG PEPFAR Team in Central Asia. This position will be administratively hired and managed by the USAID Regional Office in Almaty, but will be formally seconded to the U.S. Embassy in Kazakhstan in order to serve as an inter-agency Coordinator and manager of the PEPFAR program across the region.
The Central Asia Regional PEPFAR Coordinator is a Personal Services Contract position. USAID/Central Asian Republics is the designated USG agency to administer this contract. In accordance with USAID rules and regulations governing programs and operations, USAID will administer most administrative and human resource requirements of the PEPFAR Coordinator including, but not limited to, payroll, personnel files, and any required formal approval of travel.
2) Supervision Received: First-line supervision of this position is assigned to the DCM or Ambassador in Kazakhstan. However, the incumbent is also accountable to the DCM or Ambassadors of all five Central Asian countries in sensitively and collaboratively managing the complex processes associated with planning for, implementing, and monitoring the results of the Emergency Plan across the participating USG implementing agencies and across the region. Under the leadership of the U.S. Ambassador to Kazakhstan or his/her designee, who serves as the primary USG representative in addressing PEPFAR issues for the CAR region, the Coordinator is expected to meet frequently with the Ambassador or DCM in each of the Central Asian countries to brief him/her on important program or management issues, and carry COM concerns back to the PEPFAR team.
3) Available Guidelines: The incumbent is required to understand major Agency specific policies and procedures of the participating PEPFAR agencies which are relevant to project activity planning and management. Oral guidance from the immediate Supervisor (the DCM or Ambassador in Kazakhstan) and specific detailed instructions will be given (when necessary) for carrying out unique assignments. The incumbent will be required to be proactive in keeping abreast of evolving guidelines and policies which affect the overall PEPFAR initiative and keeping abreast of evolving development on HIV/AIDS issues in Central Asia.
4) Exercise of Judgment: In instances not clearly covered by written guidelines, the incumbent should use her/his own personal, well informed judgment in devising innovative approaches to resolving technical, administrative, managerial and/or policy problems. Excellent (balanced) judgment must be exercised in setting priorities. The use of initiative, discretion and patience is expected from the incumbent in dealing with USG and representatives from donor organizations to resolve problems that arise during the course of work for which there is often no clear or immediate solution.
5) Authority to Make Commitments: The incumbent has no independent authority to commit U.S. Government (USG) funds on behalf of the U.S. Government.
6) Nature, Level and Purpose of Contacts: The Incumbent is expected to meet occasionally with high-level officials from host governments in the region, including Ministers and Deputy Prime Ministers (the GFATM CCM chair in several countries). The incumbent is required to maintain a solid working relationship with the five U.S. Embassies, and all USG Agencies involved with PEPFAR to function effectively. The incumbent is required to work closely with OGAC, foundations, NGOs, other foreign donor institutions (i.e. WHO, WB, ADB, DFID, etc.) and other local and international groups.
E) REQUIRED SKILLS AND QUALIFICATIONS
1) General: Must be a U.S. citizen, must be able to obtain a U.S. Government "SECRET" security clearance. Must be able to secure a medical clearance to serve in Central Asia. Must be willing to travel throughout the five Central Asian Republics regularly and routinely (approximately 30% of the time).
2) Prior Work Experience: At least 10 years of progressively senior experience managing HIV/AIDS, health or other development programs, preferably in a developing country context, with at least 5 years of experience in managing and implementing HIV/AIDS programs. At least 3 years of proven experience working with large, complex international or domestic programs. Demonstrated experience operating in his/her non-native cultural environment. Demonstrated strong knowledge and understanding of PEPFAR policies and programming parameters. Actual experience managing PEPFAR programs. Extensive knowledge of the technical issues related to HIV/AIDS, including knowledge of the principles of monitoring and evaluation.. Demonstrated strong ability to manage complex program of cooperation among multiple USG agencies with sometimes competing priorities and demands.
3) Skills and Abilities: Skilled at conveying information to the COM, to agencies, local and international partners, and to OGAC. Demonstrated ability to mediate interagency conflicts and facilitate and contribute to consensus decisions on complex technical, programmatic, strategic, and financial issues. Demonstrated ability to develop and coordinate implementation of detailed work plans/timelines for major time-sensitive and complex work projects that are dependent on contributions from multiple US government agencies and dozens of individuals. Ability to empower PEPFAR team members to apply available resources and expertise to addressing the local epidemic. Strong capacity to multi-task including managing, prioritizing, and fulfilling competing demands in real time. Familiarity with USAID, CDC and/or other USG systems and implementation mechanisms.
Leadership skills: Demonstrated excellent negotiating and diplomatic skills, and ability to resolve conflict and bring parties with differing opinions to consensus based on available evidence. Demonstrated ability to manage a diverse team to achieve shared results in a complex operating environment. Experience managing inter-agency government and/or non-government work groups highly desirable.
4) Language: Demonstrated excellent written and oral English communication skill (minimum level IV); ability to communicate complex technical, operational, and policy issues clearly and succinctly to a wide variety of audiences. Proficiency in Russian preferred but not required.
5) Education: An advanced degree (Masters or higher) in Public Policy, Public Heath, Administration or a related field.
Applicants will be evaluated against the following criteria:
Education: 05 points
Notice to Applicants: The USAID reserves the right to obtain from previous employers relevant information concerning the applicant's past performance and may consider such information in its evaluation.
Qualified individuals are requested to submit a Optional Application for Federal Employment OF-612 including experience, salary history, list of references, and recent sample of his/her written work (maximum 1-3 pages, i.e. policy memo) no later than COB (6 p.m. Almaty time) August 30, 2013. The form is available at the USAID website, http://www.usaid.gov/forms/ or http://transition.usaid.gov/forms/OF612.pdf. Applications, recent supervisor reference and three (3) personal references, and writing sample may be submitted by e-mail, fax, DHL or FedEx air courier by the closing date, above, to:
Email or faxed documentation is preferred as mail delivery may be untimely. To ensure consideration of applications for the intended position, please reference the solicitation number on your application, and as the subject line in any cover letter.
USAID/CAR expects to award a personal services contract for an off-shore US Citizen for two-year period commencing o/a September 30, 2013, subject to security and medical clearances and funds availability. The duty post for this contract is Almaty, Kazakhstan.
10. Benefits include post differential, housing, and other benefits per USAID regulations. Basic household furnishings will be available in quarters to be provided by USAID.
11. For more information about USAID/Central Asian Republics see Mission's website http://centralasia.usaid.gov/
AS A MATTER OF POLICY, AND AS APPROPRIATE, A PSC IS NORMALLY AUTHORIZED THE FOLLOWING BENEFITS:
2. ALLOWANCES (if Applicable).
LIST OF REQUIRED FORMS FOR PSCs
1. Optional Form 612.
NOTE: Form 5 is available from the requirements office.
* Standardized Regulations (Government Civilians Foreign Areas).
3. POLICY GUIDANCE PERTAINING TO PSCs
a) ACQUISITION AND ASSISTANCE POLICY DIRECTIVES (AAPDs) and CONTRACT INFORMATION BULLETINS (CIBs) contain changes to USAID policy and General Provisions in USAID regulations and contracts. Please refer to this website http://www.usaid.gov/business/business_opportunities/cib/subject.html#psc to determine which AAPDs and CIBs apply to this contract.
b) AIDAR: The Agency for International Development Acquisition Regulation (AIDAR) Appendix D - Direct USAID Contracts With U.S. Citizens or U.S. Residents for Personal Services Abroad found at: http://www.usaid.gov/policy/ads/300/aidar.pdf is the primary regulation governing USPSCs for USAID.
Dept. of State
Washington, District of Columbia 20521-7030
41 Kazybek Bi., Park Palace
August 13, 2013
Aug 30, 2013 11:59 pm Eastern
Automatic, 15 days after response date
September 28, 2013
Original Set Aside:
R -- Professional, administrative, and management support services
541 -- Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services/541990 -- All Other Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services