Vacancy Identification Number (VIN): 802005
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?
These vacancies are advertised at the range of grades covered by the VA qualifications standard.
As a VA professional, your opportunities are endless. With many openings in the multiple functions of VA, you will have a wide range of opportunities at your fingertips. 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.
NOTE: 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-7 to GS-11.
The Professional Standards Board (a peer-review group) will review the selected candidates education and experience and recommend the grade and step at which the candidate will be placed. The salary is based on the grade and step approved for the selected candidate.
Special Employment Consideration: VA encourages persons with disabilities to apply.
This is a temporary position not to exceed 9-30-2013. Temporary positions are not eligible for benefits.
U. S. Citizenship
Must pass pre-employment examination
English Language Proficiency required
Designated and-or Random Drug Testing required
Background and-or Security Investigation required
This position is located in the PM&R Service. This position provides Occupational Therapy support to the PACT teams in the Community Based Outpatient Clinics (CBOC) and the Denver VA Medical Center. This may involve travel to CBOCs. Locations may
also include La Junta, Pueblo, Burlington, Alamosa, and Colorado Springs.
GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF ASSIGNED DUTIES : The Occupational Therapist serves as a health care professional, is a subject matter expert in all aspects of outpatient Occupational therapy evaluation, assessment and treatment. This therapist serves as the Occupational Therapist on a multi-disciplinary outpatient Patient Aligned Care Team (PACT). The Occupational Therapist on the team is the professional area expert and must be comfortable with a wide variety of diagnoses and patient complexity in the realm of chronic and acute pain, geriatric and adult musculoskeletal dysfunction, orthopedic and neurological disorders, functional mobility. Knowledge and skills should include good assessment skills, evaluation of basic activities of daily living and upper extremity function, issuance of durable medical equipment, and home safety. The therapist evaluates and interprets information from a brief screening assessment and information from the team members and integrates this into occupational therapy recommendations. This therapist serves in a consultative capacity to the PACT members. The therapist guides the team to establish an appropriate treatment plan for each patient. This therapist may facilitate an evaluation for a patient requiring durable medical equipment or special equipment for home safety, or refers the patient for a consult for the appropriate treatment or clinic. This therapist provides education and instruction to the patient and appropriate family members/care givers which may include training and installation of DME, home program, use of assistive devices, or recommends consultation to occupational therapy for full outpatient evaluation and treatment.
Relocation Expenses: Relocation expenses are not authorized for this position.
Tour of Duty: Monday through Friday, 8:00 - 4:30 or 7:30 - 4:00. Candidate must be willing to work weekends, irregular work hours and extended hours. The candidate must be willing to be placed, detailed or temporarily assigned to other related services and/or locations, if necessary.
NOTE: Effective January 1, 2007, candidates for certification as an Occupational Therapist Registered (OTR) must be a graduate from a post-baccalaureate accredited occupational therapy program approved by NBCOT or be a graduate from a degree program recognized by NBCOT or considered equivalent to the American Occupational Therapy education standard.
- U.S. citizenship.
- Graduation from a degree program in occupational therapy approved by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) or predecessor organizations to include an internship (supervised fieldwork experience required by the educational institution).
- Certification/Examination. Possession of written documentation that the individual has passed the entry-level certification examination for OTs which is administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT).
NOTE: The OT must maintain full, current and unrestricted license, trademark, registration, or certification as required by state statute. The majority of states have determined that licensure is the most effective approach to regulating occupational therapy practitioners. As of the date of this standard, 47 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico license OTs; two statesHawaii and Michiganhave registration laws; and one state, Colorado, has a title protection trademark law.
- State Licensure/Certification/Registration/Trademark (hereafter referred to as state regulatory requirement). The OT must hold a full, current, and unrestricted state license, certification, or registration or trademark to practice occupational therapy in a State, Territory, a Commonwealth of the United States (i.e., Puerto Rico), or in the District of Columbia.
a. Creditable Experience
(1) Knowledge of Occupational Therapy Practice. To be creditable, the experience must have required the use of knowledge, skills, abilities, and other characteristics associated with current professional occupational therapy practice. Creditable experience can be obtained through employment as an OT. This may be evidenced by one or both of the following:
(a) Active professional practice. Active professional practice means paid/non-paid employment as a professional OT as defined by AOTA. Experience gained after graduation but prior to licensure is creditable provided the candidate was utilized as a graduate OT and subsequently passed the NBCOT certification and the required state regulatory requirements.
(b) Completion of a post-graduate fellowship or a post-graduate residency program may substitute for creditable experience on a year for year basis. Fellowships or post-graduate training programs are typically in specialty areas such as advanced practice, research, mental health, gerontology, enhanced education, health policy, leadership and therapeutic sciences.
(2) Quality of Experience. Experience is only creditable if it is post-graduate experience as a professional OT directly related to the duties to be performed. Qualifying experience must also be at a level comparable to professional occupational therapy experience at the next lower level. For all assignments above the full performance level, the higher level duties must consist of significant scope, administrative independence, complexity (difficulty) and range of variety as described in this standard at the specified grade level and be performed by the incumbent at least 25% of the time.
(3) Content Specialty. Specialized content areas of occupational therapy practice include, but are not limited to, certified hand specialist, ergonomic specialist, blind/visual rehabilitation assistive technology specialist, functional capacity examination specialist, polytrauma, traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, geriatrics, mental health, driver rehabilitation, home based primary care, etc.
(4) Part-time Experience. Part-time experience is creditable according to its relationship to a full-time workweek. For example, an OT employed 20 hours per week, or on a half time basis, would receive 1 full-time workweek of credit for each 2 weeks of service.
b. Grade Determinations. In addition to the basic requirements for employment, the following criteria must be met when determining the grade of candidates:
(1) GS-7 Staff Occupational Therapist
(a) Experience or Education. None beyond the basic requirements. Candidates at this level may have a baccalaureate degree from an approved program prior to the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) January 1, 2005, decision as shown in the note in paragraph 2.
(b) Assignment. Employees at this level serve in an entry level OT career development position practicing under close supervision of an OT at or above the full-performance level.
(2) GS-9 Staff Occupational Therapist
(a) Experience or Education. In addition to meeting the basic requirements, candidate must have:
1. At least 1 year of post-graduate progressively responsible experience equivalent to the next lower grade level; or 2. Education equivalent to two full years of progressively higher level graduate education in a field related to the practice of occupational therapy; or 3. Masters Degree in Occupational Therapy or a closely related field accredited by ACOTE.
(b) Assignments. Candidates at this grade level serve as staff OTs in a career development position progressively expanding their ability to provide assessment and treatment interventions for a wider range of human function systems. OTs at this level require less direction and guidance, but practice under the direction of an OT at or above the full performance level.
(3) GS-11 Occupational Therapist
(a) Education and Experience. In addition to meeting the basic requirements, completion of one year of progressively complex experience and a broader scope of experience equivalent to the next lower grade directly related to the position being filled, or 3 years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to a degree in occupational therapy or a directly related field.
(b) Assignment. OTs at this grade level must meet state regulatory requirements for assignment at this grade level, and are considered to be at the full performance level. Staff OTs at this level practice independently and are responsible for performing occupational therapy assessment and treatment interventions. Staff OTs demonstrate a full professional understanding of the theories of treatment in occupational therapy and their proper application through the use of activity analysis, behavioral intervention, frame of references, and therapeutic procedures. They are assigned to all program areas which are covered by Rehabilitation Services and provide professional, independent occupational therapy services in the assigned area. OTs at this level may be given general assignments in any occupational therapy program area where the advanced specialized knowledge is not required on a recurring basis due to the patient population served and complexity of the facility and/or treatment area or may serve as the sole OT at a less complex facility. Individuals may perform ancillary assignments, including program management duties on an occasional basis, where the complexity and amount of work is not substantial (less than 25% of the duty time).
IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE WILL NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE.
References : VA Handbook 5005, Part II, Appendix G14, OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST QUALIFICATION STANDARD.
PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS: Occupational Therapy is a vocation that requires regular and recurring physical exertion with long periods of standing, bending, walking and periods of aSSisting patients with transfers. This hospital has a policy of NO PATIENT LIFT, meaning that mechanical lifts are available to assist with safe patient transfers without lifting patients directly. Occupational Therapy also requires manual dexterity to manipulate tools and equipment with activities such as assembling equipment with the use of hand tools such as screwdriver or pliers.
APPLICANTS PLEASE NOTE:
The ACOTE is the only accreditation agency recognized by the United States Department of Education (USDE) and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). Degree programs may be verified by contacting the American Occupational Therapy Association website or at their office address: American Occupational Therapy Association, P.O, Box 31220, Bethesda, MD 20824-1220.
Foreign graduates of occupational therapy programs meet the requirements if they have a current, full, active and unrestricted license/certification/registration/trademark and certification/registration.
NOTE: Effective January 1, 2005, ACOTE accredits only master or doctoral degree programs in occupational therapy.
When applying for Federal Jobs, eligible Veterans should claim preference on their application or résumé. Applicants claiming preference based on service-connected disability, or based on being the spouse or mother of a disabled or deceased Veteran, must complete an SF 15, Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference. Veterans who are still in the service may be granted tentative preference on the basis of information contained in their applications, but they must produce a DD Form 214 or other proof prior to appointment to document entitlement to preference. For more information on Veterans' Preference, please visit http://www.fedshirevets.gov/job/veterans.aspx .
HOW YOU WILL BE EVALUATED:
Your application, résumé and/or supporting documentation will be verified. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect consideration for employment. You may also be evaluated based upon the question responses you provide during a structured interview. In responding to structured interview questions you should be sure to cite specific examples of experience, explain exactly what you did, and the outcome.
Working for the Department of Veterans Affairs offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes, in part, paid vacation, sick leave, holidays, life insurance, health benefits, thrift savings plan, and participation in the Federal Employees Retirement System. In addition to traditional "dollars and cents" benefits, we offer a range of benefits to help balance work and life. For more information please visit us at http://www.va.gov/JOBS/Job_Benefits/benefits.asp .
This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies.
This position is in the Excepted Service and does not confer competitive status.
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.
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