The Battle Creek VA Medical Center is recruiting a Social Worker to serve in the Outpatient Mental Health Clinic under the Psychiatry Service. The incumbent is required to exercise independent judgment and decision making in the mental health treatment and formulation of the Veteran's treatment plans and is expected to function both independently and/or as a collaborating member of the treatment team. Applicants pending the completion of educational or certification/licensure requirements may be referred and tentatively selected but may not be hired until all requirements are met. Basic Requirements: United States Citizenship: Non-citizens may only be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Policy. Education: Have a master's degree in social work from a school of social work fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). Graduates of schools of social work that are in candidacy status do not meet this requirement until the School of Social Work is fully accredited. A doctoral degree in social work may not be substituted for the master's degree in social work. Verification of the degree can be made by going to http://www.cswe.org/Accreditation to verify that the social work degree meets the accreditation standards for a masters of social work. Licensure: Persons hired or reassigned to social worker positions in the GS-0185 series in VHA must be licensed or certified by a state to independently practice social work at the master's degree level. Current state requirements may be found by going to http://vaww.va.gov/OHRM/T38Hybrid/. Exception. VHA may waive the licensure or certification requirement for persons who are otherwise qualified, pending completion of state prerequisites for licensure/certification examinations. This exception only applies at the GS-9 grade level. For the GS-11 grade level and above, the candidate must be licensed or certified. At the time of appointment, the supervisor, chief social work or social work executive will provide the unlicensed/uncertified social worker with the written requirements for licensure or certification, including the time by which the license or certification must be obtained and the consequences for not becoming licensed or certified by the deadline. Loss of Licensure or Certification. Once licensed or certified, social workers must maintain a full, valid, and unrestricted independent license or certification to remain qualified for employment. Loss of licensure or certification will result in removal from the GS-0185 social worker series and may result in termination of employment. Physical Requirements. See VA Directive and Handbook 5019, Employee Occupational Health Services. English Language Proficiency. Candidates must be proficient in spoken and written English to be appointed as authorized by 38 U.S.C. § 7403(f). Current employees may qualify based on being covered by the Grandfathering Provision as described in the VA Qualification Standard for this occupation (only applicable to current VHA employees who are in this occupation and meet the criteria). Creditable Experience. The candidate must have knowledge of current professional social work practices. To be creditable, the experience must have required the use of knowledge, skills, abilities, and other characteristics associated with current professional social work practice. The experience or education must be post-Masters of Social Work (MSW) degree. Experience and education satisfying this requirement must be active professional practice, which is paid/non-paid employment as a professional social worker, as defined by the appropriate state licensing board. Quality of Experience. Experience is only creditable if it is obtained following graduation with a master's degree in social work and if it includes work as a professional social worker directly related to the position to be filled. Qualifying experience must also be at a level comparable to social work experience at the next lower level. Part-Time Experience. Part-time experience is creditable according to its relationship to the full-time work week. For example, one week of full-time credit is equivalent to two weeks of part-time work. Fellowships or Post-Graduate Training. Fellowship and post-graduate training programs are typically in a specialized area of clinical practice, i.e., group or family practice. Training as a fellow or post-graduate may be substituted for creditable experience on a year-for-year basis. Practicum in a VA Setting. A VHA practicum experience may not be substituted for experience, as the practicum (field placement) is completed prior to graduation with a master's degree in social work. Grade Determinations: In addition to the basic requirements for employment, the following criteria must be met when determining the grade of candidates. Social Worker, GS-9 Experience, Education, and Licensure. None beyond the basic requirements. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate all of the following KSAs: (a) Ability to work with Veterans and family members from various socioeconomic, cultural, ethnic, educational, and other diversified backgrounds utilizing counseling skills. (b) Ability to assess the psychosocial functioning and needs of Veterans and their family members, and to formulate and implement a treatment plan, identifying the Veterans problems, strengths, weaknesses, coping skills, and assistance needed. (c) Ability to implement treatment modalities in working with individuals, families, and groups to achieve treatment goals. This requires judgment and skill in utilizing supportive, problem solving, or crisis intervention techniques. (d) Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships and communicate with clients, staff, and representatives of community agencies. (e) Fundamental knowledge of medical and mental health diagnoses, disabilities, and treatment procedures. This includes acute, chronic, and traumatic illnesses/injuries; common medications and their effects/side effects; and medical terminology. Social Worker, GS-11 Experience and Licensure. Appointment to the GS-11 grade level requires completion of a minimum of one year of post-MSW experience equivalent to the GS-9 grade level in the field of health care or other social work-related settings, (VA or non-VA experience) and licensure or certification in a state at the independent practice level. OR Education. In addition to meeting basic requirements, a doctoral degree in social work from a school of social work may be substituted for the required one year of professional social work experience in a clinical setting. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. In addition to the experience above, candidates must demonstrate all of the following KSAs: (a) Knowledge of community resources, how to make appropriate referrals to community and other governmental agencies for services, and ability to coordinate services. (b) Skill in independently conducting psychosocial assessments and treatment interventions to a wide variety of individuals from various socio-economic, cultural, ethnic, educational and other diversified backgrounds. (c) Knowledge of medical and mental health diagnoses, disabilities and treatment procedures (i.e. acute, chronic and traumatic illnesses/injuries, common medications and their effects/side effects, and medical terminology) to formulate a treatment plan. (d) Skill in independently implementing different treatment modalities in working with individuals, families, and groups who are experiencing a variety of psychiatric, medical, and social problems to achieve treatment goals. (e) Ability to provide consultation services to new social workers, social work graduate students, and other staff about the psychosocial needs of patients and the impact of psychosocial problems on health care and compliance with treatment. References: VA HANDBOOK 5005/120 PART II APPENDIX G39 September 10, 2019 The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-11.The actual grade at which an applicant may be selected for this vacancy is in the range of a GS-9 to a GS-11. ["VA Careers - Social Work: https://youtube.com/embed/enRhz_ua_UU Duties of this position may include but not limited to; Primary job functions include the provision of direct patient care and of consultation services of difficult or complex cases. The incumbent interacts and works with clinicians from other disciplines as a member of a multidisciplinary treatment team. The incumbent is skillful in interpersonal relationships including conflict resolution and the ability to work collaboratively with staff from other professions. The incumbent determines patients' needs for evaluation, diagnostic procedures, individual and group psychotherapy, and case management. As a fully licensed and privileged social worker, the incumbent provides a full range of comprehensive, efficacious and evidence-based psychotherapeutic interventions, including individual, couples, family, and group psychotherapy as well as interview based and psychological testing-based assessments as approved and credentialed by the PSB. Individual and/or group therapy or specialized intervention, for which the incumbent does not have clinical privileges in Battle Creek VAMC, are referred to another team member who is so privileged. The incumbent is responsible for timely completion of all clinical charting and documentation required by the VAMC for veterans for whom the incumbent provides services. The incumbent provides education to patients, family members, and significant others regarding relevant psychological material. The social worker will perform all other duties assigned by the Program Manager, Outpatient Mental Health Clinic, even though they may not be outlined above, as long as he or she can do so without violating ethical standards and are approved, credentialed and privileged by the PSB. Work Schedule: Mon-Friday 0800-1630. Due to the nature of this position some evenings and weekends may be required in emergent situations Compressed/Flexible: not available Telework: 1-2 days per pay period Virtual: This is not a virtual position. Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized"]
About Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration
Providing Health Care for Veterans: The Veterans Health Administration is America’s largest integrated health care system, providing care at 1,255 health care facilities, including 170 medical centers and 1,074 outpatient sites of care of varying complexity (VHA outpatient clinics), serving 9 million enrolled Veterans each year.