Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration Social Worker in Lowell, Massachusetts
Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration
1 vacancy in the following location:
- Lowell, MA
Work Schedule is Full Time - Excepted Service NTE NTE 2 YEARS
Opened Thursday 10/13/2016 (10 day(s) ago)
** Closes Thursday 10/27/2016 (4 day(s) away)
Vacancy Identification Number (VIN): 1824351
THIS POSITION IS BEING ANNOUNCED AS A MULTI-DISCIPLINE FOR ONE VACANCY: SOCIAL WORKER (VIN#1824351), PSYCHOLOGIST (VIN#1824367 ), OR LICENSED PROFESSIONAL MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELOR (VIN#1824381)
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?
As a VA professional, your opportunities are endless. 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. VA offers generous paid time off and a variety of predictable and flexible scheduling opportunities. For more information on the Department of Veterans Affairs, go to http://www.vacareers.va.gov/ **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.
This is an Excepted Appointment, not-to-exceed 2 years, but may be extended up to 4 years. Temporary appointments are non-status, non-permanent appointments of limited duration.
The Social Worker position is located at the Lowell Vet Center in Lowell, Massachusetts and will provide counseling to eligible active duty service members, veterans, and their families of the Vet Center program. Readjustment counseling includes individual and group counseling over issues of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and related psychological difficulties, marital and family issues, substance abuse, employment, military sexual trauma, homelessness, bereavement, and other issues impacting upon successful readjustment. This task is accomplished in collaboration with other members of the Vet Center or other interdisciplinary treatment teams both within the Department of Veterans Affairs, community agencies and the Department of Defense as appropriate. The duties of the position include but are not limited to:
- completes psycho-social assessments and military history to identify problem areas
- develops a unique treatment plan that reflects a course of therapeutic intervention that will address the needs identified in the assessment
- maintains and exercises an effective resource data base that is used to address the needs of the client, which may be better served by programs external to the Vet Center
- acts as an advocate when it serves the best interest of the active duty service member, veteran, and their families without fostering dependency and preserving the right of the client to exercise choice
- assesses whether a client is of harm to self or others and provides further psychiatric assessment if necessary
- provides education or facilitates education to elements external to the Vet Center
- ensures good communication and clinical treatment to patients that are shared with other health care providers as required
- exercises a variety of individual and group counseling techniques that are evidence based in the treatment of readjustment counseling problems and demonstrate good clinical practice.
Work Schedule:8:00 am to 4:30 pm (The employee may be required to work other than normal duty hours to include evenings, weekends, and/or holidays. The employee will be required to safely operate a government vehicle under a myriad of conditions to support mission.)
Functional Statement Title/#: Social Worker
- Occasional Travel
- In support of direct client care, outreach events and/or training.
- Must pass a 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.
- Must have a current/valid driver's license
- U.S. citizenship.
- 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).
- Licensure.Be licensed or certified by a state to independently practice social work at the master's degree level. 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 up to the full performance level. For grade levels above the full performance level, the candidate must be licensed or certified.
- English Language Proficiency.Social workers must be proficient in spoken and written English.
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 Determinations: In addition to the basic requirements for employment, the following criteria must be met when determining the grade of candidates.
GS-09 Social Worker
Experience, Education and Licensure. GS-9 is the entry level grade for the GS-185 social work series and is used for social workers with less than one year of post-MSW experience and for social workers who are not yet licensed or certified at the independent practice level. Social workers at the GS-9 level are working toward completion of prerequisites for licensure or certification. In addition, the candidates must demonstrate the KSAs below.
Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
Ability to provide psychosocial treatment to a wide variety of individuals from various socio-economic, cultural, ethnic, educational, and other diversified backgrounds. This requires knowledge of human development and behavior (physical and psychological), and the differential influences of the environment, society, and culture.
Ability to work with patients and families who are experiencing a variety of psychiatric, medical, and social problems utilizing individual, group, and family counseling skills. Work with more complex problems is done under close supervision. With guidance from the social work supervisor, ability to assess the psychosocial functioning and needs of patients and their family members, and to formulate and implement a treatment plan, identifying the patient's problems, strengths, weaknesses, coping skills, and assistance needed.
Basic knowledge of psychosocial treatment modalities and, under supervision, 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.
Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with clients, staff, and representatives of community agencies. Ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing, with people from varied backgrounds.
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.
Basic skill in the use of computer software applications for drafting documents, data management, and tracking. Ability to learn and utilize software programs in use by VHA.
GS-11 Social Worker
Experience, Education and Licensure.Promotion to the GS-11 full performance level requires completion of a minimum of 1 year of post-MSW degree experience in the field of health care social work (VA or non-VA experience) and licensure or certification in a state at the independent practice level.
In addition to meeting basic requirements, a doctoral degree in social work from a school of social work may be substituted for the required 1 year of professional social work experience in a clinical setting. In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the KSAs below.
Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
Knowledge of community resources, how to make appropriate referrals to community and other governmental agencies for services, and ability to coordinate services.
Ability to independently assess the psychosocial functioning and needs of patients and their family members and to formulate and implement a treatment plan, identifying the patient's problems, strengths, weaknesses, coping skills and assistance needed, in collaboration with the patient, family and interdisciplinary treatment team.
Ability to independently conduct psychosocial assessments and provide psychosocial treatment to a wide variety of individuals from various socio-economic, cultural, ethnic, educational and other diversified backgrounds. This requires knowledge of human development and behavior (physical and psychological) and the differential influences of the environment, society and culture.
Knowledge and experience in the use 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.
Knowledge of psychosocial treatment and ability to independently implement treatment modalities in working with individuals, families and groups who are experiencing a variety of psychiatric, medical and social problems to achieve treatment goals. This requires independent judgment and skill in utilizing supportive, problem solving or crisis intervention techniques.
Ability to independently provide counseling and/or psychotherapy services to individuals, groups and families. Social workers must practice within the bounds of their license or certification. For example, some states may require social workers providing psychotherapy to have a clinical level of licensure.
Ability to provide consultation services to other staff about the psychosocial needs of patients and the impact of psychosocial problems on health care and compliance with treatment. Ability to provide orientation and coaching to new social workers and social work graduate students. Ability to serve as a field instructor for social work graduate students who are completing VHA field placements.
Ability to independently evaluate his/her own practice through participation in professional peer review case conferences, research studies, or other organized means.
Knowledge and skill in the use of computer software applications for drafting documents, data management, and tracking, especially those programs in use by VHA.
References: VA Handbook 5005/50, Part II, Appendix G39, Social Worker QUALIFICATION STANDARD, dated February 29, 2012 This can be found in the local Human Resources Office.
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.
Physical Requirements:The work is primarily sedentary. It may require some lifting (10-2-lbs.) occasionally. Reaching above shoulder; Frequent keyboarding (4-7 hours per day); Sitting (4-7 hours per day); Walking (up to 6 hours per day); Standing (up to 8 hours per day); Infrequent climbing/descending of stairs; Some bending; Ability for rapid mental and muscular coordination simultaneously; Correctable near sighted and far sighted vision; Hearing (Aid permitted).
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: http://www.vacareers.va.gov/why-choose-va/benefits/index.asp.
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.
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.
This position is in the Excepted Service and does not confer competitive status.
Salary Range: $53,610.00 to $84,320.00 / Per Year
Series & Grade: GS-0185-00/00
Supervisory Status: No
Who May Apply: United States Citizens
Control Number: 453264800
Job Announcement Number: UL-17-MKD-1824351