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Technical Officer (Mental Health)

Copenhagen (Denmark)

  • Organization: WHO - World Health Organization
  • Location: Copenhagen (Denmark)
  • Grade: P-4, International Professional - Internationally recruited position - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Public Health and Health Service
  • Closing Date: 2021-07-29

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The Division of Country Health Policies and Systems (CPS) assists countries in the Region with the design and implementation of appropriate health policies and systems to strengthen universal health coverage. It works to strengthen data-driven, evidence-informed, contextually tailored policy development and implementation at national, regional and local levels, taking an inclusive approach across the life course. The Division advocates strengthening of public health leadership, focusing on implementing policies that are people centred, promote health, prevent illness, and address the social and economic determinants of health, while fostering leadership on equity, human rights and gender mainstreaming in health. It focuses on building capacity for health systems innovation to enable the sustainable delivery of high-quality primary health and community services that are effectively linked to hospitals, and mental health, public health and social care services. To do so, CPS supports country efforts to facilitate access so as to leave nobody behind, to improve financial protection, to strengthen the health workforce, to increase access to affordable medicines and technologies, and to promote the uptake and implementation of digital technology.

The mental health flagship (MHF) initiative will work with units and divisions across the Regional Office to address mental health conditions which are a leading cause of suffering and disability in the European Region. Priority areas to be addressed at regional level include the mental health fall-out of the COVID-19 crisis, a surge of diseases of despair, the persistent prevalence of depressive and anxiety disorders among young people, the growth of self-harm and suicide, and the unmet needs of people with dementia or autism spectrum disorder, the mental and psycho-social support needs of health workers, the need for supporting the resilience of communities affected by conflict. The Mental Health coalition which will be developed and anchored through this flagship initiative will raise awareness to combat stigma and discrimination, advocate for investment in mental health and promote mental health research. At country level the emphasis will be on support for services transformation. This will require working with and through clinicians involved in the delivery of mental health services as well as partnering with service user organizations. Key areas of activity will include; support for prevention of mental illness.


The incumbent will provide expert technical advice on mental health policy in the European Region. She/ is to work on the implementation of activities to deliver the objectives of the mental health flagship by supporting the development of regional policies in the area of mental health, advocating for investment in mental health and providing direct country support in the development and implementation of mental health strategies and projects as a means to improve universal health coverage, protect people in health emergencies and promote health and well-being.

Under the supervision of the Regional Adviser, the incumbent will assume the following core responsibilities and achieve the stated tasks:

1. Provide technical assistance with the development of mechanisms, instruments and tools (such as national health strategies and policies, monitoring and evaluation, performance assessment and performance management and approaches to enhance effectiveness of stakeholder involvement) as well as the estimation of the required resources (human, financial, infrastructure and technological) and knowledge (i.e. through research, evaluation, performance measurement and knowledge management) to build understanding and capacity for improving and assessing Mental Health and Mental health policies and services;

2. Build mental health literacy capacity at country level and develop and support global and regional mental health awareness initiatives designed to combat stigma, discrimination and violation of human rights, and social exclusion;

3. Advocate for investment in mental health and actively seek to mobilise resources for mental health programmes and projects taking an active part in the formulation of selected BCAs' workplans and report on programme activities within EURO, to HQ and donors;

4. Synthesize and disseminate related knowledge to build the evidence base for dissemination to Member States and regional partners as required including knowledge transmission and advice for the enhancement of the capacities in the area of mental health and health promotion;

5. Provide technical input and support for the organisation of national, sub-regional and regional activities including policy dialogues, conferences and expert meetings;

6. Work to mainstream mental health as part of the health and well-being agenda across the life course;

7. Performing other duties as assigned by the Regional Advisor.



Essential: University degree (Master's level) in a mental health related field or equivalent.
Desirable: Additional university degree in any of the above fields.


Essential: At least 7 years of professional experience in in the areas relevant to mental health of which at least 2 years at the international level.
Desirable: Relevant experience within WHO, the United Nations or other international organizations in the area of mental health policy.


Solid knowledge of mental health policies at the national, regional or global levels.

Ability to critically review and advice on relevant subject matters including on mental health promotion and prevention.

Knowledge of political systems, social and health systems, culture in the European countries.

Ability to identify and manage one's own emotions, as well as helping others do the same.

Ability to work comfortably in fast-paced environment.

WHO Competencies

Respecting and promoting individual and cultural differences
Moving forward in a changing environment
Producing results

Use of Language Skills

Essential: Expert knowledge of English.
Desirable: Intermediate knowledge of either French, Russian or German.


WHO salaries for staff in the Professional category are calculated in US dollars. The remuneration for the above position comprises an annual base salary starting at USD 74,913 (subject to mandatory deductions for pension contributions and health insurance, as applicable), a variable post adjustment, which reflects the cost of living in a particular duty station, and currently amounts to USD 4195 per month for the duty station indicated above. Other benefits include 30 days of annual leave, allowances for dependent family members, home leave, and an education grant for dependent children.


  • This vacancy notice may be used to fill other similar positions at the same grade level
  • Only candidates under serious consideration will be contacted.
  • A written test may be used as a form of screening.
  • In the event that your candidature is retained for an interview, you will be required to provide, in advance, a scanned copy of the degree(s)/diploma(s)/certificate(s) required for this position. WHO only considers higher educational qualifications obtained from an institution accredited/recognized in the World Higher Education Database (WHED), a list updated by the International Association of Universities (IAU)/United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The list can be accessed through the link: Some professional certificates may not appear in the WHED and will require individual review.
  • Any appointment/extension of appointment is subject to WHO Staff Regulations, Staff Rules and Manual.
  • Staff members in other duty stations are encouraged to apply.
  • WHO is committed to workforce diversity.
  • WHO has a smoke-free environment and does not recruit smokers or users of any form of tobacco.
  • WHO has a mobility policy which can be found at the following link: Candidates appointed to an international post with WHO are subject to mobility and may be assigned to any activity or duty station of the Organization throughout the world.
  • Applications from women and from nationals of non and underrepresented Member States are particularly encouraged.
We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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