The Pre-Admission Testing Clinic (PATC) / Medical Companion Social Worker position is in Social Work service at the VA Boston Healthcare System. This position is located at Jamaica Plain, MA. This position is full-time, 40 hours per week. 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 the CSWE website to verify if that social work degree meets the accreditation standards for a master of social work. Licensure: Persons hired or reassigned to social worker positions in the GS-185 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 on the OHRM website. 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. English Language Proficiency: Social workers must be proficient in spoken and written English in accordance with VA Handbook 5005, Part II, chapter 3, section A, paragraph 3j. 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). If social workers covered under the grandfathering provision of the 1991 Federal law regarding licensure or certification of VHA social workers leave the GS-0185 social work series, they lose the grandfathering protection. If they choose to return at a later date to the GS-0185 series, they must be licensed or certified to qualify for employment as a social worker. Grade Determinations: GS-9:Experience, Education, and Licensure: None beyond the basic requirements. AND Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities: In addition to the basic requirements, the candidate must demonstrate all of the following KSAs: 1. Ability to work with Veterans and family members from various socioeconomic, cultural, ethnic, educational, and other diversified backgrounds utilizing counseling skills. 2. 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. 3. 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. 4. Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships and communicate with clients, staff, and representatives of community agencies. 5. 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. 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. 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. AND Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities: In addition to the experience above, candidates must demonstrate all of the following KSAs: 1. Knowledge of community resources, how to make appropriate referrals to community and other governmental agencies for services, and ability to coordinate services. 2. 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. 3. 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. 4. 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. 5. 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, Part II, Chapter 3, Appendix G39 - Social Worker Qualification Standard. 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 GS-9 to GS-11. Physical Requirements: The work involves standing, stooping, lifting (perhaps greater than 50 pounds), sitting, pulling, assisting patients as needed. Additionally, moving patient and supplies and pushing patient as needed. The Social Worker is required to work at a computer work station to complete his/her documentation of incidents involving patients and the progress in the patient's overall program. ["Pre-Admission and Testing (PATC)/ Medical Companion Social Worker provides comprehensive, interdisciplinary assessment and education prior to surgery. The Medical Companion Program provides caregivers through a contracted agency for Veterans who require medical sign-out and post procedure supervision. PATC is designed to provide service prior to veteran's surgery and remove barriers to care by providing independent psychosocial and case management services to veteran population with complex medical, social and psychiatric conditions. The social work interventions include preadmission psychosocial evaluation, preliminary discharge planning discussion, coordination with nursing evaluations, and ensuring completion of advance directives prior to admission. Social Workers are uniquely prepared for this role by virtue of their education, training, and experience to understand the person institution and the influences that family and community have in impacting the healthcare needs of Veterans. The incumbent will provide social work services to veterans who are receiving care in subspecialty clinics at the JP VA but will be focused on the needs of the Endoscopy/GI Clinic. This involves orienting veterans to VA programs such as Medical Companion, Rideshare and VA benefits. In addition to facilitating the usage of MCP services for Veterans in the Endo/GI Clinic, the Social Worker in this position would be responsible for assisting with alternate plan of care creation for Veterans who do not meet MCP eligibility by conducting pre-surgery assessment and proving case management and care coordination to decrease barriers to care. The incumbent will establish and maintain effective working relationships with veterans and their families and medical center staff. The incumbent will analyze operating and administrative processes; and work to resolve problems and improve operations. This involves building strong interpersonal relationships, data gathering and analysis, and problem solving. GS-9: Is the entry level grade for the GS-0185 Social Work series and is used for Social Workers with less than one year of post-MSW experience. Individuals assigned at this level closely supervised and are working toward completion of prerequisites for licensure or certification. GS-11: Individuals assigned as GS-11 social workers are considered to be at the full performance level and must have an independent licensure. (Note: For GS-11, you must submit a copy of your independent license with the application.) Work Schedule: Monday-Friday 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Telework: Telework Ad-Hoc work can be performed on an as needed basis anywhere other than a VA facility or using VA-leased space (example: home). Virtual/Remote Work: Not Authorized Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized Financial Disclosure Report: Not required NOTIFICATIONS: This position is in the Excepted Service. Due to a critical staffing shortage, 38 U.S.C. § 7412 waives the requirement to apply Veterans' preference for this job announcement. Veterans' preference does not apply for other current permanent Federal agency employees. Current and former Federal employees must submit copies of their most recent SF-50, (Notice of Personnel Action). The SF-50 must identify the position title, series, grade, step, tenure and type of service (Competitive or Excepted). In some cases, more than one SF-50 may be required to show a higher grade previously held. This position is a AFGE Bargaining Unit position. This position is covered by locality-based comparability pay. The incumbent may be required to travel to other VA campuses and CBOC's. Narrative responses to the knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) will be required from the selectee in order to proceed with the appointment. Incomplete applications will not be considered."]
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.