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Detention Doctor

Requisition ID:  15295
Region:  Global Deployment Option
Contract type:  Open-ended contract

What we do


The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) works worldwide to provide humanitarian assistance to people affected by conflict and armed violence. We take action in response to emergencies and at the same time promote respect for international humanitarian law. We are an independent and neutral organization, and our mandate stems essentially from the Geneva Conventions of 1949. We work closely with National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and with their International Federation in order to ensure a concerted, rational and rapid humanitarian response to the needs of the victims of armed conflict or any other situation of internal violence. We direct and coordinate the international activities conducted in these situations.

Our ‘healthcare in detention’ programme aims at ensuring that all people deprived of their liberty have decent conditions allowing them to regain their health and remain healthy throughout their detention.

We focus on four main areas: monitoring and improving access to health care services, strengthening penitentiary health-care systems, capacity-building and advocacy, and managing outbreaks. We also foster collaboration among people and ministries who are in a position to make a difference.

You are part of a multidisciplinary team that has a coordinated approach in order to address the range of detainees’ needs and provide a continuum of care. Internally, you interact within the Protection and Health departments at the delegation and consult relevant specialists at headquarters on technical issues. Externally, you interact with penitentiary staff and authorities and on a broader level with local and national health authorities.

Your role


Within a detention team, the role of the Detention Doctor is to improve detainees' access to proper, ethical health care. You assess the needs, and plan, implement, monitor and evaluate related projects and activities. You contribute to improving the health care system and to restoring, improving or maintaining detainees’ dignity, health and nutritional status.

  • Assesses the needs, and plans and implements projects and activities aimed at improving detainees' access to effective health care, their health and nutritional status, and the health system.
  • Monitors and evaluates these projects and activities. Collects and analyses relevant data to this end.
  • Shares the findings and results with other members of the Detention team (from the Protection, Water and Habitat and Economic Security departments) and the Health team, and writes relevant reports.
  • Establishes and maintains contacts/partnerships with external players involved in health care in detention and outside.
  • Ensures respect for medical ethics by all staff.
  • Documents cases of ill-treatment when needed.
  • Follows up sick and wounded detainees in line with internal agreements.
  • Advises and follows up hunger strikers and the medical staff in charge of them.
  • Train medical staff.
  • Draws up the annual institutional budget and planning document (Planning for Results).

Your profile - Education and experience required


  • Strong motivation by humanitarian work.
  • University degree in medicine (medical doctor).
  • License to practice in country of residence.
  • Between 3-5 years of professional clinical experience with minimum 2 years of international humanitarian experience.
  • Sound experience in project management and public health.
  • Experience in healthcare in detention a strong asset.
  • Previous exposure to international human rights issues an asset.
  • Proficient command of English (written and spoken) and a good command of two additional languages (French, Arabic, Spanish, Russian)
  • Digital literacy


Our operational context


  • In line with the principle of neutrality, the ICRC does not assign personnel to a country of which they are nationals
  • You are in good health and will do a medical check-up prior to departure in the field
  • You are prepared to accept unaccompanied postings (i.e. no spouse, partner, children or dependents) for at least the first 24 months.
  • In line with our security guidelines, you hold a manual driving license

Our offer


  • Rewarding work in a humanitarian and multicultural environment
  • A two-week orientation course and other opportunities for further in-house training
  • Competitive employment package with attractive social benefits
  • Be part of the ICRC talent pool and be contacted for future assignments globally

How to join


Ready to apply? You will need to upload your resume and a cover letter as well as copies of your diplomas and certifications, valid license to practice, passport and driving license.

We welcome applications from all qualified candidates. The ICRC values diversity and is committed to creating an inclusive working environment.