Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration Psychiatric Nursing Assistant in Los Angeles, California

Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration
Many vacancies in the following location:
  • Los Angeles, CA
Work Schedule is Full Time - Permanent

Opened Monday 10/17/2016 (9 day(s) ago)

** Closes Monday 11/14/2016 (19 day(s) away)

Job Overview

Vacancy Identification Number (VIN): 1826481

* Current permanent VA and Federal employees should apply under the Announcement RN-16-MCY-1816244-BU*

OUR MISSION: To fulfill President Lincoln's promise – "To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan" – by serving and honoring the men and women who are America's Veterans. How would you like to become a part of a team providing compassionate care to Veterans?

You Can Make a Difference

Working with the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) offers an opportunity for a rewarding health care career serving our nation's Veterans. Your work in this position will give you the opportunity to serve those who have served our nation. Not only is it the largest most technologically advanced integrated health care system in the nation, but we also provide many other services to Veterans through the Benefits Administration and National Cemeteries. VA Professionals feel good about their careers and their ability to balance work and home life. For more information on the Department of Veterans Affairs, go to

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.

NOTE*:*These positions are open until October 31 2016, but may be filled prior to the posted closing date. The first cut-off date is October 24, 2016 with subsequent cut-off dates every 7 days. Applicants applying after each cut-off date will receive consideration if all positions are not filled from the previous pool of candidates.


The Psychiatric Nursing Assistant (PNA) positions are located in Nursing Service, Mental Health. The PNA at this grade level function as a member of the nursing care team and assist licensed nursing staff in the care of veteran patients who are in an acute, sub-acute or chronic states of illness.

The major duties are included, but are not limited to:

  • Perform patient care duties, ranging from routine to moderately specialized within patient-care mental health locked inpatient units;

  • Collect specimens, such as urine, feces, or sputum;

  • Communicate with patients to ascertain feelings or need for assistance or social and emotional support;

  • Document or report observations of patient behavior, complaints or physical symptoms to nurses;

  • Observe or examine patients to detect symptoms that may require medical attention, such as bruises, open wounds, or blood in urine;

  • Measure and record food and liquid intake or unitary and fecal output.

  • Record patient's weight, vital signs, such temperature, blood pressure, pulse or respiration rate, as directed by medical or nursing staff;

  • Participates in the application of manual or mechanical restraints;

  • Provide support assistance for the "Special precaution" therapeutic mode by maintaining contact with the patient, relative of their status;

  • Assist treatment team with patients when using a variety of treatment procedures in groups (reality orientation, small group therapy) or individually (one-to one therapy) to explore their behavior;

  • Support multidisciplinary activities, i.e., Art Therapy, Recreational Therapy and Occupational Therapy;

  • Participate in team meetings, community meetings and other therapeutic groups by sharing thoughts and feeling in reference to behavior of the participants;

  • Enter specifics information onto the patients' record/charts which include current health status and /or subtle changes in the patient's bio psychosocial status;

  • Participate with nurse in developing and implementing a plan of care;

  • Provide patient teaching, give patients and family after-care instructions and reinforces patient and family teaching;

  • Serve as a preceptor to new PNA's by assisting with the coordination of their orientation and overseeing their practical experience while in a clinical setting.

  • Monitor patients in a secured patio area, where patient smoking is allowed.

  • Respond to calls for therapeutic containment of patients located in the hospital.

Work Schedule: The employees in these positions will rotate between day, evening and night shifts as needed to ensure staffing coverage, also rotate to work weekends and holidays as assigned. He/she will work 5 days a week and the 8 hrs shifts are: 7:30am to 4:00pm and 3:30 pm to 12:00 mid-night and 11:30 pm to 8:00 am. Employee works on the weekend and holidays and is entitled to receive night differential, weekend premium and holiday pay.

Functional Statement Title/#: * Psychiatric Nursing Assistant, GS-621-00*

Travel Required
  • Not Required
Relocation Authorized
  • No
Job Requirements
Key Requirements
  • Must pass pre-employment examination
  • Must be proficient in written and spoken English
  • Designated and-or Random Drug Testing required
  • Background and-or Security Investigation required
  • Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959.

Basic Requirements:

U.S. citizenship: Non-citizens may be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Policy.

Education or Training*:* One year above high school with courses related to the NA occupation. Completion of an intensive, specialized, occupation-related course of study of less than one year as a nursing assistant. (PLEASE PROVIDE PROOF OF EDUCATION OR TRAINING).

English Language Proficiency:Must be proficient in spoken and written English as required by 38 U.S.C. 7402(d), and 7407 (d). No person will be appointed under authority of 38 U.S.C. Chapter 73 or 74, to serve in a direct patient-care capacity who is not proficient in written and spoken English.

Preferred Experience:

  • **Have at least a year or more working in Mental Health unit setting as a Nursing Assistant.

  • *Have CPR experience and current BLS card.*

*Note: *If I am selected for this position, I must provide a copy of a current Basic Life Support (BLS) certification, prior to a firm offer of employment. (This certification is a condition of employment. Certification should be considered in a similar manner as licensure is considered for a clinical professional. Staff should not let certifications expire.)

Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religions; spiritual; community; student; social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.

Grade Requirements:

PLEASE PROVIDE PROOF OF EDUCATION OR TRAINING with courses related to the Nursing Assistant Occupation.

In addition to meet the Basic Requirements, you also need to meet the below grade requirements.

GS-03: Experience and Education. None beyond the basic requirements.

GS-04: Experience.One year of specialized experience as a [NA] or experience in another medical field (licensed practical nurse, health technician, hospital corpsman, etc.), performing technical and nursing skills requiring knowledge of the human physical and emotional states, therapeutic communication, and technical skills required for basic and intermediate treatments; OR

Education.Successful completion of 2 years above high school in an accredited institution with courses related to nursing care, health care or in a field of study appropriate to the specialization of the position, such as education in a program for psychology, psychiatric, or operating room technicians; AND

*Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSAs). *In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs:

1. Ability to provide a range of patient/resident care and contribute to the completion of the nurse care plan and recovery of patients/residents.

2. Ability to observe patients/residents' or resident's physical or emotional status and refer deviations and/or problems to supervisor in a timely manner.

3. Ability to properly use equipment, materials and supplies in simple diagnostic and treatment procedures such as bladder scan, continuous passive motion device, blood glucose monitoring machine, specimen collection, etc.

4. Ability to communicate effectively with patients/residents, their families and other health professionals.

Assignment for GS-4: Individuals assigned as GS-4 Nursing Assistant (NA) are considered to be at the intermediate or developmental level and are closely supervised. NA at this grade level function as a member of the nursing care team and assist higher graded NA's, licensed nursing staff, and other members of the care team in the care of patients/ residents receiving outpatient care, home or community living care or other patients/residents who are in acute, sub-acute, or chronic states of illness. The significant factor is that they provide care under close supervision and refer issues/questions to supervisors, higher grade NA's or other healthcare professionals.

GS-05: Experience. One year of progressively responsible assignments and experience equivalent to the

GS-4 level, which demonstrates knowledge, skills, and abilities that are directly related to the specific assignment. In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the professional KSAs in subparagraph (c) below; OR

Education.Successful completion of a 4-year course of study above high school leading to a bachelor's degree that included 24 semester hours of courses related to health care or possession of a bachelor's degree; AND

Demonstrated KSAs

1. Ability to assist in the full range of nursing care to patients/residents with physical and/or behavioral problems in a hospital, long term care or outpatient setting under the direction of a Registered Nurse and/or Licensed Vocational Nurse/Licensed Practical Nurse.

2. Ability to communicate orally with patients/residents, families, interdisciplinary team and other personnel. This includes serving as a preceptor to new [NAs] by assisting with the coordination of their orientation and overseeing/assessing their practical experience while in a clinical setting.

3. Ability to recognize and react to emergent patient/resident care situations and intervene while waiting for assistance. For example, recognizing need for basic life support, controlling bleeding and assisting with behavior crisis, etc.

Assignments for GS-5: This is a full performance level for NAs. NAs at this grade level function as a member of the nursing care team and assist licensed nursing staff in the care of patients/residents receiving outpatient care, home or community living care or other patients/residents who are in acute, sub-acute or chronic states of illness. The distinguishing factor is that patient/resident assignments typically involve more complex nursing needs which can vary within a range of predictable to unpredictable requirements. NAs at this level also assume more of a peer education/mentorship role.

References: VA Handbook 5005/81, Part II, Appendix G46.

The selection will be determined by the selecting official based upon Performance Based Interviews and/or the resume, questionnaire response and the KSAO's elements that are reflected in the resume.

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: 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.

*Physical Requirements: *

The work involves moderate periods of prolonged walking, standing , kneeling. The work requires regular and recurring bending, lifting, stooping, stretching and repositioning patients or similar activities.The Psychiatric Nursing Assistant functional requirements: heavy lifting (45 lbs and over); heavy carrying (45 lbs and over); straight pulling (up to 6 hour); pushing (4 – 6 hours); reaching above shoulder; use of fingers; both eyes, hands and legs required; walking (up to 6-8 hours); standing (up to 6 hours); repeated bending (up to 1 hour); ability for rapid mental and muscular coordination simultaneously; ability to distinguish shades and colors; near vision correctable at 13" to 16"; ability to hear a whispered voice with or without a hearing aid.

Security Clearance

Public Trust - Background Investigation

Additional Information
What To Expect Next

After we receive application packages (including all required documents) and the vacancy announcement closes, we will review applications to ensure qualification and eligibility requirements are met. During our review, if your résumé and application package do not support your questionnaire answers, we will adjust your rating accordingly. After the review is complete, a referral certificate(s) is issued and applicants will be notified of their status by email (if provided); otherwise, applicants will receive a notification letter via the U.S. Postal Service. Referred applicants will be notified as such and may be contacted directly by the hiring office for an interview. All referred applicants receive a final notification once a selection decision has been made.

You may check the status of your application at any time by logging into your USAJOBS account and clicking on "Application Status." For a more detailed update of your status, click on "more information." Information regarding applicant notification points can be found in the USAJobs Resource Center.


VA offers a comprehensive benefits package. This link provides an overview of the benefits currently offered:

Receiving Service Credit for 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. VA may offer newly-appointed Federal employees credit for their job-related non-federal experience or active duty uniformed military service. This credited service can be used in determining the rate at which they earn annual leave.

Other Information

It is the policy of the VA to not deny employment to those that have faced financial hardships or periods of unemployment.

This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies in other areas within Nursing service.

This position is in the Excepted Service and does not confer competitive status.

Salary Range: $28,724.00 to $46,899.00 / Per Year

Series & Grade: GS-0621-00/00

Supervisory Status: No

Who May Apply: United States Citizens

Control Number: 453517400

Job Announcement Number: RN-17-MCY-1826481-BU