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The Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) is a world-leading institute in global health with a particular focus on low- and middle-income countries. Associated with the University of Basel, Swiss TPH combines research, education and services at local, national and international levels. 900 people from 80 nations work at Swiss TPH focusing on infectious and non-communicable diseases, environment, society and health as well as health systems and interventions.

The Department of Epidemiology and Public Health (EPH) develops and applies advanced epidemiological, biostatistical and modelling methods to advance innovation, validation, and application in the field of public health. The Household Health Systems Research group is currently looking for a

Field Research Assistant (hourly rate) –  Located in Switzerland, primarily the German-speaking part and working from home

The Project

Legionnaire’s disease is a severe form of pneumonia caused by Legionella bacteria. The infection is notifiable to the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH). The number of notified Legionnaires’ disease cases is increasing in Switzerland but it remains unclear where and under which circumstances patients get infected.

The Swiss TPH is conducting a prospective national case-control and molecular source attribution study on Legionnaires’ disease in Switzerland (SwissLEGIO). The study is conducted in collaboration with the FOPH, the “Legionella control in buildings” consortium led by Eawag (ETH Zurich), the National Reference Center for Legionella, the University Zurich, and 20 university- and cantonal hospitals across Switzerland. The study consists of questionnaire-based interviews to assess risk factors for contracting Legionnaires’ disease. In a second step, Legionella specimens are collected from patients and from their homes and other environments. The Legionella isolates obtained are analysed using whole genome sequencing (WGS), which allows the matching of clinical and environmental strains and the identification of the infectious source.

The data collection of the SwissLEGIO project is currently running and lasts until October 2023. For this research project we are looking for a highly flexible and motivated persons (as part of a fieldworker pool) who support data collection (questionnaire-based and mostly in-person interviews) primarily in the German-speaking part of Switzerland.

Your responsibilities include:

  • Conducting questionnaire-based interviews (at the hospital, at the participants’ home and by phone)
  • ­Support recruitment of participants including scheduling interviews with participants and environmental sampling appointments
  • ­Support our laboratory personnel in the collection of environmental samples (going to participants’ homes and collect water samples from their showers, kitchen faucets, garden hoses etc.)
  • ­Support various administrative and operational tasks during data collection as needed

You should have the following experiences and skills in:

  • ­BSc, MSc or Advanced Federal Diploma of Higher Education («Höhere Fachschule» degree) in a health related field (life science, pharmacy, medicine, nursing, public health, medical anthropology or similar) or training as a nursing specialist («Fachmann/-frau Gesundheit EFZ»)/ medical practice assistant («Medizinische Praxisassistent/in»). Both students and graduates are encouraged to apply.
  • ­Fluent in German, high levels of English are an asset
  • ­Open-minded, sensitive and empathetic personality with strong communication skills
  • Independent and proactive working style
  • Comfortable working with the computer and tablets
  • Flexibility in working hours (interviews might take place outside of office hours) and willingness to travel widely within Switzerland. Category B driver’s license is an asset.

We offer:

  • Training and insights into conducting a large epidemiological study
  • ­Training in research ethics (with certificate)
  • ­Flexible working conditions (you will be part of a field worker pool)
  • ­Remuneration on an hourly basis and compensation on travel expenses (half-fare tariff)

Swiss TPH is an equal opportunity employer committed to excellence through diversity.

Please submit your application online via the link provided below:

  • CV
  • Short motivational letter including availability

Please note that we can only accept applications via our online recruiting tool: Applications via e-mail or external recruiter will not be considered.


For further information, please contact Melina Bigler or Manuel Wiederkehr through the project contact (phone: +41 (0)61 284 88 50 or e-mail:

Job Profile:
Start Date: March 2023 or upon agreement
Location: Switzerland, primarily the German-speaking part and working from home
Duration: Approx. 8 months
Percentage: Flexible, approximately 10-30% depending on needs (pool of field worker), hourly remuneration
Travelling: Within Switzerland

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