PACT 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. 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.] English Language Proficiency. Candidates must be proficient in spoken and written English to be appointed as authorized by 38 U.S.C. § 7403(f). 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). Grade Determinations: 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. 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. 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: VHA Handbook 5005 Appendix G39 The full performance level of this vacancy is GS11. The actual grade at which an applicant may be selected for this vacancy is in the range of GS9 to GS11. Physical Requirements: Physical demands may include repetitive body movements including the following: frequent reaching, standing, walking, and lifting of equipment and/or patients to provide patient care. This position requires extension of the hand(s) and arm(s) in any direction including above or below shoulder level, during the provision of patient care, including retrieval of needed equipment, supplies and to make contact with the patient. This position may require the maintenance of an upright position to perform duties associated with patient care. ["VA Careers - Social Work: https://youtube.com/embed/enRhz_ua_UU Incumbent is a professional social worker assigned to PACT. The incumbent must use a high level of skill in assessing and treating the complicated psychosocial problems of Veterans and their families/significant others. 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 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. Referrals typically originate from any member of the interdisciplinary team, from Veterans and/or their families who call or walk-in for assistance, and from community professionals. The incumbent must complete thorough assessments to determine the underlying causes of the presenting problem, the interpersonal and environmental factors impacting the problem, and its affect on the patient's ability and desire to comply with the treatment recommendations by the multidisciplinary team. The social worker will help the patient and family to understand the contributing factors to the problem(s), will discuss with them the pros and cons of possible short-term and long-term solutions, encouraging them to make positive and lasting changes to reduce stressors. The social worker will coordinate with VA staff and community agencies to assist in problem solving as needed. Case management with members of the outpatient interdisciplinary team is provided in order to coordinate a collaborative effort to meet the agreed upon goals for a Veteran's treatment needs and include liaison with community professionals regarding needed services for Veterans and/or their families. Services include but are not limited to interventions to increase access to care, including transportation assistance and advanced directives, economic assistance, including assistance with medical bills, financial aid services and strategies to increase income (employment, vocational rehabilitation, VA benefits, disability), and/or reduce expenses, find the appropriate housing for the patient's level of need (affordable independent housing, homeless shelters, group and family care homes, Veterans Homes, assisted living, nursing homes, respite care, hospice care) and order necessary services to assist with functional decline. The incumbent: (Including but not limited to) (1) Must have a high level of skill and expertise to establish and maintain effective therapeutic relationships with Veterans in the Primary Care Clinic and/or their families. The incumbent is able to independently work with Veterans and their families who are experiencing a wide range of complicated medical, psychiatric, emotional, behavioral, financial, legal, and psychosocial problems. Effective social work in PACT context often occurs over a series of several visits and may involve the need of the social worker to visit the veteran in their home.\n(2) Must independently complete thorough psychosocial assessments to determine the psychosocial functioning and needs of Veterans and/or their families. The incumbent must be able to utilize this assessment in facilitating the Veteran's maximum use of treatment for attainment of the highest level of independence that is possible and practicable.\n(3) Must 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.\n(4) Must 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.\n(5) Must 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. Community placements can involve but are not limited to referrals to group and family care homes, assisted living facilities, adult day health care programs, contract nursing homes, Community Living Centers, residential care homes, inpatient and outpatient hospice services.\n(6) Must serve as a liaison between Veterans and/or their families and VA and community resources in order to ensure thorough delivery of services. Work Schedule: Monday - Friday 8A-4:30P\nVirtual: This is not a virtual position.\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.