Job Information

Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration Social Worker (Patient Aligned Care Team in Primary Care) in Togus, Maine

Summary Education Debt Reduction Program (EDRP): This position is eligible for EDRP, a student loan payment reimbursement program. You must meet specific individual eligibility requirements in accordance with VHA policy, and submit your EDRP application within four months of your start date. Approval, award amount (up to $200,000) and eligibility period (one to five years) are determined by the VHA Education Loan Repayment Services program office after complete review of the EDRP application. Responsibilities Total-Rewards-of-an-Allied-Health-VA-Career-Brochure.pdf Social Work: vacareers.va.gov/wp-content/uploads/sites/5/Total-Rewards-of-a-Social-Worker-Career-Flyer.pdf The Social Worker provides medical social work and case management services within the context of a patient-centered multidisciplinary team (Patient Aligned Care Team - PACT) to assist in the delivery of comprehensive care. Duties may include, but are not limited to: Screening/Assessment Complete a psychosocial assessment to identify strengths, needs, social support systems, disabilities, and barriers to accessing needed services and available treatment options. Collaborates with the Veteran, available family members and significant others. Demonstrates an understanding of the range of issues and needs for Veterans of multiple eras and backgrounds, including physical limitations, psychological needs and age-associated mental health, substance abuse issues, physical conditions, and gender-specific needs. Treatment Planning/Goal Setting Works with the Veteran to develop short term and long-term goals and plans, and referrals based on the Veteran's needs and preferences. Coordinates VA and community services and involves the VA primary care provider as needed. Proactively educates Veterans and families about long term care planning with a goal of avoiding unnecessary social hospitalizations Collaborates with the inpatient case manager in discharge planning for patients at high risk for re-admission due to psychosocial or environmental issues. Referral to service providers Is the subject matter expert on VA and/or community resources. Collaborates with other service providers in assessing the Veteran's needs. The social worker is responsible for educating the Veteran on the available services and assisting him/her in establishing the appropriate referrals based on preference and what is available in the community. Serves as a liaison with community professionals regarding coordination of services for veterans. Advocacy Understands the intimidation of bureaucracy and will act as an advocate when it serves the best interest of the Veteran. When it is appropriate and feasible, will educate and encourage the Veteran to advocate on his/her own behalf, thus fostering a sense of independence and empowerment. Education/Health promotion and prevention Provides education related to VA and community resources, entitlements, advance directives/living wills and will refer Veterans to the appropriate interdisciplinary team member for identified health education needs. Supportive counseling Provides the Veterans with ongoing supportive counseling. The purpose of such counseling is to deal with the psychosocial impact of coping with issues such as chronic medical conditions, financial stress, relationship stress, and adjustment to life changes. Administrative responsibilities Will enter all Veteran contacts in the electronic record using appropriate formats and templates. This information will be entered in a complete, confidential, professional, and timely manner to ensure information on the patient is shared with other VA staff. This information will be reviewed on a regular basis. Work Schedule: Monday - Friday, 7:30a 4pm Recruitment Incentive (Sign-on Bonus): Not Authorized Permanent Change of Station (Relocation Assistance): Not Authorized EDRP Authorized: Former EDRP participants ineligible to apply for incentive. Contact Jaime Perez Jaime.Perez3@va.gov , the EDRP Coordinator for questions or assistance on how to begin the application process. Learn more EDRP Assignment Code: 18 Pay: Competitive salary and regular salary increases Paid Time Off: 37-50 days of annual paid time offer per year (13-26 days of annual leave, 13 days of sick leave, 11 paid Federal holidays per year) Parental Leave: After 12 months of employment, up to 12 weeks of paid parental leave in connection with the birth, adoption, or foster care placement of a child. Child Care Subsidy: After 60 days of employment, full time employees with a total family income below $144,000 may be eligible for a childcare subsidy up to 25% of total eligible childcare costs for eligible children up to the monthly maximum of $416.66. Retirement: Traditional federal pension (5 years vesting) and federal 401K with up to 5% in contributions by VA Insurance: Federal health/vision/dental/term life/long-term care (many federal insurance programs can be carried into retirement) Telework: VA supports the use of telework as a way to help attract and retain talented individuals in public service, increase worker productivity, and better prepare the agency to operate during emergencies. This position may be authorized for telework. Telework eligibility will be discussed during the interview process. Virtual: This is not a virtual position. Functional Statement #: 402-F02988; 402-F06558; Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized Financial Disclosure Report: Not required Requirements Conditions of Employment You must be a U.S. Citizen to apply for this job. Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959. Must be proficient in written and spoken English. You may be required to serve a probationary period. Subject to background/security investigation. Selected applicants will be required to complete an online onboarding process. Must pass pre-employment physical examination. Participation in the seasonal influenza vaccination program is a requirement for all Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care Personnel (HCP). Participation in the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccination program is a requirement for all Veterans Health Administration Health Care Personnel (HCP) - See "Additional Information" below for details. Qualifications 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: Be a citizen of the United States. (Non-citizens may 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: 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). 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, 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 and Work Environment: See VA Directive and Handbook 5019, Employee Occupational Health Services. Education IMPORTANT: A transcript must be submitted with your application if you are basing all or part of your qualifications on education. Note: Only education or degrees recognized by the U.S. Department of Education from accredited colleges, universities, schools, or institutions may be used to qualify for Federal employment. You can verify your education here: http://ope.ed.gov/accreditation/. If you are using foreign education to meet qualification requirements, you must send a Certificate of Foreign Equivalency with your transcript in order to receive credit for that education. For further information, visit: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ous/international/usnei/us/edlite-visitus-forrecog.html. Additional Information NOTIFICATIONS: 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. Veterans' preference does not apply for other current permanent Federal agency employees. This position is an AFGE Bargaining Unit position. This position is covered by a special rate. Travel and relocation expenses are not authorized. This position is in the Excepted Service. May be required to attend conference at other facilities or other VA sites on occasion. Selectee may be required to work at any VA Maine Healthcare System campus, as needed. 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. THIS OPEN & CONTINUOUS ANNOUNCEMENT (OCA) ESTABLISHES A STANDING REGISTER OF ELIGIBLE APPLICANTS, which closes on June 28, 2024. The initial cut-off date for referral of eligible applications will be May 23, 2024 with subsequent reviews every other week as additional vacancies occur, or on an as-needed basis, until positions are filled. Please see the "What To Expect Next" area of the announcement which provides additional information on the referral process for this type of announcement Receiving Service Credit or Earning Annual (Vacation) Leave: Federal Employees earn annual leave at a rate (4, 6 or 8 hours per pay period) which is based on the number of years they have served as a Federal employee. Selected applicants may qualify for credit toward annual leave accrual, based on prior work experience or military service experience. This credited service can be used in determining the rate at which they earn annual leave. Such credit must be requested and approved prior to the appointment date and is not guaranteed. This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies. This position is in the Excepted Service and does not confer competitive status. VA encourages persons with disabilities to apply. The health-related positions in VA are covered by Title 38, and are not covered by the Schedule A excepted appointment authority. Pursuant to VHA Directive 1193.01, VHA health care personnel (HCP) are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 subject to such accommodations as required by law (i.e., medical, religious or pregnancy). VHA HCPs do not include remote workers who only infrequently enter VHA locations. If selected, you will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and submit documentation of proof of vaccination before your start date. The agency will provide additional information regarding what information or documentation will be needed and how you can request a legally required accommodation from this requirement using the reasonable accommodation process. If you are unable to apply online or need an alternate method to submit documents, please reach out to the Agency Contact listed in this Job Opportunity Announcement.