The social worker is assigned to the Primary Care Patient Aligned Care Team (PACT) and must use a high level of skill in assessing and treating the complicated psychosocial problems of Veterans and their families/significant others. Social workers are uniquely prepared for this role by virtue of their education, training, and experience which prepares them to understand the person-in-situation and the influences that family and community have in impacting the health care needs of Veterans. To qualify for this position, applicants must meet all requirements within 30 days of the closing date of this announcement. Basic Requirements: Citizenship. Be a citizen of the United States. (Non-citizens may be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with chapter 3, section A, paragraph 3g this part). 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. 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. English Language Proficiency. Candidates must be proficient in spoken and written English to be appointed as authorized by 38 U.S.C. § 7403(f). Grade Determinations: 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. Preferred Experience: Due to the nature of independent work and autonomy of this position, applicants should be licensed or certified by a state to practice social work at the advanced practice level. References: VA Handbook 5005/120, Part II, Appendix G39, September 10, 2019. The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-11. Physical Requirements: Day-to-day work requires both hands, use of fingers, must be able to see a computer screen, hearing (aid permitted), and the ability to work alone or closely with others. There may be exposure to Silica and asbestos. ["Due to the nature of independent work and autonomy of this position, applicants should be licensed or certified by a state to practice social work at the advanced practice level. The Patient Aligned Care Team is a comprehensive team which delivers primary care to Veteran patients in a longitudinal rather than episodic fashion and which has as its focus: prevention, health promotion, coordination, and chronic disease management. The social worker in this Veteran-Centric approach often functions as a care coordinator with a panel of Veterans to ensure that health care meets the needs, as defined by the Veteran. Social work responsibilities include the assessment of psychosocial problems that cause distress, often impacting the health condition and creating barriers to care. These stressors can include, but are not limited to, adjustment to the current medical condition, untreated or under-treated mental health or substance abuse condition, economic instability, legal problems, and inadequate housing and transportation. Functions and responsibilities include: Independently work with Veterans and their families who are experiencing a wide range of complicated medical, psychiatric, emotional, behavioral, financial, legal, and psychosocial problems. Knowledge of the PACT team approach and the role of each health and allied health care team member as well as an understanding of the role of the social worker in the PACT model. Complete thorough psychosocial assessments to determine the psychosocial functioning and needs of Veterans and/or their families. Actively participate as a member of the interdisciplinary treatment team and actively participate through collaboration with Veterans and family as well as interdisciplinary treatment team members in the development and implementation of treatment goals and interventions. Possess a working knowledge and experience in use of medical and mental health diagnoses, disabilities, and treatment procedures including acute, chronic, and traumatic illnesses, substance abuse disorders, common medications and their effects/side effects, and medical terminology. Facilitate action for community placements through collaboration with Veterans and their families as well as interdisciplinary treatment team members to ensure that appropriate community placements are completed in a timely manner. Understand caregiver stressors, ability to conduct caregiver assessment, and provide appropriate caregiver specific interventions. Serve as a liaison between Veterans and/or their families and VA and community resources in order to ensure thorough delivery of services. Independently implement treatment modalities and evidence-based practices as well as provide educational classes, and/or supportive groups for Veterans and families, including shared medical appointments. Provide consultation and education to Veterans and their families regarding community resources, VA benefits, specialty programs, and Advance Directives. Provide consultation to other treatment team and staff members regarding psychosocial needs of Veterans and/or their families and the impact of the identified psychosocial problems on the Veteran's health care planning and compliance with treatment. Maintain knowledge of Veteran's benefits and services, community resources, and process for making appropriate referrals to community and other governmental programs or agencies. Provide case management services to Veterans and their families throughout the continuum of care. Recognize signs and symptoms of abuse, neglect, and exploitation. Communicate effectively, both orally and in writing with people from varied backgrounds. Support the mission, policies, and procedures of the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Veterans Health Administration (VHA), the appropriate Veterans Integrated Service Network (VISN), and the facility. Serve on committees, work groups, and task forces at the facility as deemed appropriate by the supervisor and Social Work Executive. Apprise supervisor of problems and recommend solutions to problems encountered in the area of responsibility. Further professional growth through continuing education and ensure continuing education is appropriate to the area of assignment. Demonstrate knowledge and skill in the use of software applications for drafting documents and data management as well as other computer systems in use by the VHA. Maintain a level of productivity and quality consistent with the complexity of the assignment and consistent with Social Work standards, Joint Commission standards, and facility standards. Modify tour of duty as necessary to accommodate the needs of Veteran patients. Work Schedule: Mon - Fri, 8am to 4:30pm\nTelework: Not Available\nVirtual: This is not a virtual position\nFunctional Statement #: 000000\nRelocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized\nPermanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized\nFinancial Disclosure Report: Not required"]
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.