HCHV-Social Worker
Department of Veterans Affairs - Big Spring, TX

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Vacancy Identification Number (VIN): 641742 (Include # on all documents)

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.

Are YOU the one?

The West Texas VA Health Care System honors America’s Veterans.

We expect our team to meet these Quality Standards.

Safety : Safety First! Always!

Kindness : You will treat all Veterans, families, and team members with compassion, respect, and dignity.

Performance Excellence : You will always give your best.

Presentation : You will practice professionalism, positive attitude, and passion.

Stewardship : You will undertake a personal responsibility for the duties entrusted to you.

PLEASE READ THE ENTIRE ANNOUNCEMENT CAREFULLY BEFORE APPLYING ONLINE!! APPLY ONLINE OR BY FOLLOWING THE FAXING INSTRUCTIONS LOCATED IN THE “HOW TO APPLY” SECTION. YOUR APPLICATION PACKAGE MUST BE COMPLETE TO INCLUDE ALL REQUIRED DOCUMENTATION (SEE “REQUIRED DOCUMENTS” SECTION) TO RECEIVE FULL CONSIDERATION FOR THIS POSITION.

HOW YOU WILL BE EVALUATED SECTION:
INCOMPLETE APPLICATIONS will receive a rating of (IFM) ineligible due to missing forms. Requests for reconsideration of ratings will not be considered for applicants who fail to submit a complete application package (including licensure if required). We cannot be held responsible for incompatible software, incomplete uploads or fax transmissions.

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.

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/ .

KEY REQUIREMENTS

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

DUTIES:
This announcement is not intended to cover all the duties, responsibilities or qualifications of this position. This position is full time permanent .The incumbent is assigned to The George H. O'Brien, Jr. VA Medical Center for The West Texas VA Health Care System, Big Spring, TX., and provides general Social Work Services to the homeless veteran populations enrolled at he WTVAHCS and practices under the social work scope of practice. Service includes provision of high quality case management, clinical treatment, advocacy, and coordination of linkages to other appropriate VA or community service providers and or agencies as needed by the homelss client.This is accomplished in collaboration with other memebers of the interdiciplinary team. the Incumbent wilol assist Veterans, as needed in other clinics of the medical center UC/PC, inpatient, CLC, etc.

QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED:
BASIC REQUIREMENTS:
U.S. citizenship.
Education. Have a master’s degree in social work (MSW) 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.
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.

GRADE DETERMINATIONS:
GS-11: Social WorkerExperience, 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. NOTE: For appointment licensure or certification at this level please refer to paragraph 2c.

OR,

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 in subparagraph below.

Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

1. Knowledge of community resources, how to make appropriate referrals to community and other governmental agencies for services, and ability to coordinate services.

2. 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.

3. 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.

4. 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.

5. 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.

6. 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.

7. 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.

8. Ability to independently evaluate his/her own practice through participation in professional peer review case conferences, research studies, or other organized means.

9. Knowledge and skill in the use of computer software applications for drafting documents, data management, and tracking, especially those programs in use by VHA.

For the GS-12 Senior Social Worker: Experience, Education and Licensure. Senior Social Workers have experience that demonstrates possession of advanced practice skills and judgment. At least two years should be in an area of specialized social work practice. Senior social workers must be licensed or certified by a state at the advanced practice level which included an ASWB advanced generalist or clinical examination, unless they are grandfathered by the state in which they are licensed to practice at the advanced practice level (except for licenses issued in California, which administers its own clinical examination for advanced practice). Senior social workers may have certification or other post-masters training from a nationally recognized professional organization or university that includes a defined curriculum/course of study and internship or equivalent supervised professional experience in a specialty (see paragraph 3a(c)). In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the professional KSAs in subparagraph below.

Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

1. Advanced knowledge of and mastery of theories and modalities used in the specialized treatment of complex physical or mental illness. Ability to incorporate complex multiple causation in differential diagnosis and treatment of veteran patients, including making psychosocial and psychiatric diagnoses within approved clinical privileges or scope of practice. Ability to determine priority for services and provide specialized treatment services.

2. Advanced and expert skill in a range of specialized interventions and treatment modalities used in specialty treatment programs or with special patient populations. This includes individual, group, and/or family counseling or psychotherapy and advanced level psychosocial and/or case management interventions used in the treatment of veterans with polytraumatic injuries, spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, visual impairment, post-traumatic stress disorder, etc.

3. Advanced knowledge and expert skill in developing and implementing methods for measuring effectiveness of social work practice and services in the specialty area, utilizing outcome evaluations to improve treatment services. Ability to coordinate the delivery of specialized psychosocial services and programs. Ability to design system changes based on empirical findings.

4. Ability to provide subject matter consultation to colleagues and students on the psychosocial treatment of patients treated in the specialty area, rendering professional opinions based on experience and expertise and role modeling effective social work practice skills. Ability to teach and mentor staff and students in the specialty area of practice and to provide supervision for licensure or for specialty certifications.

5. Ability to expand clinical knowledge in the profession, demonstrating innovation in the creation of new models of psychosocial assessment or intervention to identify and address specialized clinical needs. Ability to write policies, procedures, and/or practice guidelines pertaining to the specialty population or specialty treatment program.

IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE.

References : VA Handbook 5005/23, Part II, Appendix F7, SOCIAL WORKER QUALIFICATION STANDARD, dated February 2009, and OPM Group Coverage Qualification Standard for Professional and Scientific Positions at http://www.opm.gov/qualifications/standards/IORs/GS0100/0185.htm VA Handbook 5005 available in the local Human Resources Office and OPM Group Coverage Qualification Standard for Professional and Scientific Positions at http://www.opm.gov/qualifications/standards/IORs/GS0100/0185.htm .

APPLICANTS PLEASE NOTE: Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Applicants must, therefore, only report attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Applicants can verify accreditation at the following website: http://www.ed.gov/admins/finaid/accred/index.html . All education claimed by applicants will be verified by the appointing agency accordingly. *** 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. ***

Veterans' Preference:
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.

BENEFITS:
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://www4.va.gov/JOBS/Job_Benefits/benefits.asp .

OTHER INFORMATION:
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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The United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is a government-run military veteran benefit system with Cabinet-level status. It is...