Clinton Health Access Initiative

Oncology Nurse

Addis Ababa
Program (Division)
Country Programs - Country Teams (ARCHIVED)


Founded in 2002, by President William J. Clinton and Ira Magaziner, the Clinton Health Access Initiative, Inc. (“CHAI”) is a global health organization committed to strengthening integrated health systems and expanding access to care and treatment in the developing world. CHAI’s solution-oriented approach focuses on improving market dynamics for medicines and diagnostics; lowering prices for treatment; accelerating access to lifesaving technologies; and helping governments build the capacity required for high-quality care and treatment programs. Since its inception, CHAI’s programs have helped more than 11.8 million people in more than 70 countries have access to CHAI-negotiated prices for HIV/AIDS medicines, saving the global health community billions of dollars.


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ACS and CHAI have launched a new program to expand access to cancer treatment in Africa. The program will focus on engagement with pharmaceutical manufacturers as well as in-country support to the governments of Nigeria and Ethiopia. We are building a small team of ambitious, creative individuals to design the strategy and drive the work.


The Problem:

The state of cancer treatment in Africa today looks similar to that of HIV in the early 2000s. There are effective tools to diagnose and treat cancer, but access is largely limited to wealthy countries. Sub-Saharan Africa’s cancer burden is significant and growing. In 2012, there were an estimated 626,400 new cases of cancer and 447,700 deaths from cancer in Sub-Saharan Africa. Cancer incidence in Africa is projected to increase by 85% in the next fifteen years. Yet the global market for cancer treatment functions poorly for people with cancer in Sub-Saharan Africa, resulting in high prices and limited availability. Chemotherapy is not accessible to the vast majority of patients who need it. And human resource gaps limit the number of patients able to access basic services.


Ethiopia, with a population of 94 million people, has 61,000 new cancer cases and 45,000 deaths from cancer each year. Cancer treatment is provided at one hospital in Addis Ababa, which has four oncologists, 18 beds, and two radiotherapy machines.


As a result, cancer in Sub-Saharan Africa is twice as lethal as in the United States. ACS and CHAI seek to close this gap.


With just 4 oncologists working in Ethiopia’s public sector, it is impossible to serve all the patients who need services. In order to address this problem, the government of Ethiopia has developed an ambitious plan to expand cancer services to new hospitals, empowering non-specialists to deliver certain basic services, while centralizing more complex services with the existing oncologists.


ACS and CHAI are supporting the Federal Ministry of Health of Ethiopia to expand treatment of breast cancer from one hospital to 12 as a part of their recently launched National Cancer Control Plan. In phase one, CHAI will work with the FMOH to launch breast cancer chemotherapy treatment at 1-2 hospitals where no or limited cancer diagnosis and treatment is currently available.


We are seeking an Oncology Nurse to work alongside Ethiopian clinical staff to provide clinical expertise and to support the launch of the breast cancer chemotherapy treatment expansion program. The Oncology Nurse will transfer skills and provide clinical mentorship and advice on patient care, working with both clinical and administrative hospital staff to identify and address gaps. This position will be based at the hospital (to be determined) and will work with the CHAI team in Addis Ababa on a regular basis. The systems developed and lessons learned from this effort will not only benefit the cancer patients treated at the hospital; it will also serve as a platform for further expansion to the remaining 10 hospitals in Ethiopia- and potentially to other countries that are similarly constrained due to a lack of oncologists.


Note: The Nurse will not any time treat or care for patients directly. Rather, the focus will be on mentoring, with other hospital clinicians ultimately responsible for the decision making, drug dispensing and administration and procedures. The Nurse can conduct a physical exam but this should be done with another clinician as a way of demonstrating how to do it.



  • Provide clinical oncology expertise through training and mentorship to nurses on ward rounds, outpatient clinic, staff meetings and education sessions.
  • Provide leadership and organizational skills mentoring, for nurses, which lead to efficient inpatient and outpatient processes of care that include principles of patient safety.
  • Provide expert general nursing and oncology advice in the development of standard operating procedures (SOPs), referral protocols, and treatment protocols that guide care delivery.
  • Provide training and reinforce adherence to nationally endorsed protocols and SOPs to facilitate safe and standardized quality cancer care.
  • Facilitate appropriate tracking for hospital-based oncology nurse training and educational initiatives.
  • Identify areas where external partners can contribute or where training gaps exist and lead partnership initiatives as they develop (i.e. off-site physician trainings or gaps in pathology expertise).
  • Work closely with partners at FMOH, FMOH national referral facilities, and Nursing Schools to contribute to national oncology training curricula development and implementation.
  • Work with CHAI and FMOH leaders to integrate yearly clinical training goals and objectives for nurses within the broader local and national political and academic landscape.
  • Works collaboratively with leaders, partners and staff in identifying opportunities for formal quality improvement initiatives.
  • Other responsibilities, as needed


We are seeking a highly motivated individual with an ability to think creatively and work effectively in an entrepreneurial environment. The Oncology Nurse must be able to function independently and flexibly, solving problems as they arise. This role requires strong relationship management. CHAI places great value on the following qualities: resourcefulness, entrepreneurialism, tenacity, independence and work ethic.


  • At least 2-5 years post-graduation work experience as an oncology RN or NP
  • Demonstrated strong clinical expertise in oncology nursing
  • Previous expertise in unit based clinical training and education
  • Demonstrated possession of excellent interpersonal communication (written and oral), programmatic and organizational skills
  • Ability to manage staff well and contribute to overall program mentoring at all levels
  • Ability to think and plan strategically at a systems level
  • Culturally sensitive
  • Patient and flexible
  • Interest in global health
  • Previous work in a low income country strongly preferable
  • Ability to work productively in highly collaborative setting while also able to function independently
  • Demonstrated ability managing complexity and prioritizing multiple tasks
  • Willingness to work and live in a remote setting


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