Médecins Sans Frontières is an international independent medical-humanitarian organization, which offers assistance to populations in distress, to victims of natural or man-made disasters and to victims of armed conflict, without discrimination and irrespective of race, religion, creed or political affiliation.

MSF is a civil society initiative that brings together individuals committed to the assistance of other human beings in crisis. As such MSF is by choice an association.

Each individual working with MSF does it out of conviction and is ready to uphold the values and principles of MSF.

The MSF movement is built around five operational directorates supported by MSF’s 21 sections, 24 associations and other offices together worldwide. MSF OCBA is one of those directorates. The operations are implemented by field teams and the mission coordination teams; together with the organizational units based in Barcelona, Athens and decentralized in Nairobi, Dakar and Amman. The field operations are guided and supported by 5 Operational Cells, the Emergency Unit and other departments supporting operations, including the HR Department.


General scope:

The general objective of the Psychologist OCBA Staff Care is to contribute to the improvement of the psychosocial health of the field teams and its members, guaranteeing mental health support by:

  • Providing psychosocial support in case of critical incidents.
  • Providing psychosocial support during acute stress situations and individual distress.
  • Developing and implementing strategies and interventions aimed at improving the mental health of the field teams.
  • Developing policies related to mental health of field teams.

Place in the organisation:

  • Part of the OCBA Staff Care Team in the HR department.
  • Reports to the Head of Staff Care Area.
  • Manages the psychosocial mobile implementing officer.
  • Works closely with the Operational Cells and with the “Country Management Team” of missions, to analyze the psychosocial situation of the teams as well as to prepare proposals and implement them.
  • Coordinates a network of external professionals who provides support to the field teams, both at national and international levels.


a) Critical Incident support:

  • Participates in the on-call service for critical incidents (under the lead of the psychologist in charge of coordination of critical incident support).
  • Back up as member of the Crisis Team set up for major critical incidents.
  • Participate in critical incident field visits.
  • Provide remote support to team members affected by critical incidents.
  • Reinforce the critical incident external support team by identifying trained psychologist able to be part of this roster – with a special focus on regional support networks.
  • Support OCBA teams evacuated and ensure their psychological follow up during the evacuation in close collaboration with the operational cell and other relevant team/departments.

b) Coordination and implementation of psychosocial DBF procedures:

  • Participate in the coordination of the procedures ensuring international OCBA staff have a return talk organized on return (emotional debriefing).
  • Carry out return talks.
  • Refer international mobile staff to an external referral network of psychologists when needed.
  • Identify volunteers in the Eastern African Region motivated to reinforce the PSU capacity to ensure return talks for the people from the EA region working with OCBA.
  • Participate in BFs – DBFs of HOMs, Medcos, HRCOs, Fieldcos and PMRs.

c) Psychological Support:

  • Provide psychological support to team members in the field, national and international, remotely and during field visits.
  • Support punctually in the referrals of HQ personnel presenting mental health distress.
  • Support staff and their families during medical evacuations.
  • Advise on the management and support of team members in distress.
  • Advise and provide support to the Mission Coordination Teams (HQ cell and field coordination teams) in the management and follow up of issues related to the team’s mental and psychosocial health.
  • Maintain regular contact with counterparts in the field (HoM, MedCO, FC) and in HQ (in the cells: Rehuco and Tesaco; in the partner section, dir HR).
  • Carry out field visits aiming at strengthening capacity for psychosocial support to field staff at mission level.
  • Subject to availability, participate in the support of other OC’s team members in the countries where OCBA is doing a field visit.

d) Building external networks:

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