Social Worker – General Mental Health Clinic
This is an OPEN CONTINUOUS ANNOUNCEMENT and will remain open until September 30, 2023 or until all positions are filled. The initial cut-off date for referral of eligible applications will be November 23, 2022, with subsequent application reviews every 2 weeks. If vacancies remain after September 30, 2023, then another announcement will be opened in October 2023. Eligible applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis and qualified candidates will be considered as vacancies become available. This Announcement will be used to fill multiple vacancies within multiple Services identified during the interview.
- The General Mental Health Program (GMHC) offers a wide array of services, including outpatient assessment and medication management, supportive therapy, specialized group therapy for veterans. It is organized into 4 interdisciplinary teams. Specialty programs for GMHC include: Substance Dependency Treatment Program (SDTP), Opiate Treatment Program (OTP), and PTSD Clinical Treatment (PCT). A walk-in clinic is staffed with GMHC staff rotating through the clinic for cover.
- The GMHC includes a Case Management Program that ensures comprehensive care, linkages, follow up services and resources to Veterans. Providers of case management services will be social workers, psychologists, and RNs. Specialty Programs will provide specific therapeutic interventions and clinicians in these programs will not be designated as primary case managers.
- The Incumbent independently performs case finding functions and outreach, identifying and screening patients for psychosocial needs. Incumbent must possess the knowledge and ability to independently implement treatment modalities, provide counseling or psychotherapy for individuals, families and groups.
- Independently conducts psychosocial assessments and makes psychosocial diagnoses based on assessment. Develops treatment plans in collaboration with the veteran/family and with the interdisciplinary treatment team. Incumbent possesses the skills to offer psychosocial interventions and measures outcomes to interventions. Incumbent is able to coordinates community-based services, including information and referral for additional services from other VA programs, other government programs and community agency programs.
- Independently provides consultation services to other staff regarding the psychosocial needs of veterans and the impact of psychosocial problems on health care and adherence to treatment plan. Ability to evaluate incumbents’ own practice through professional peer review, case conferences and other organizational means. Incumbent is able to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing, with people from varied backgrounds
Work Schedule: Alternate to include evenings and/or Saturdays
Virtual: This is not a virtual position.
Functional Statement #: 000000
Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized
EDRP Authorized: Contact Demetrius.Roberts@va.gov, the EDRP Coordinator for questions/assistance
Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized
Financial Disclosure Report: Not required
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.
- United States Citizenship: Non-citizens may only 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 http://www.cswe.org/Accreditation to verify that the social work degree meets the accreditation standards for a masters of social work.
- Licensure. Persons hired or reassigned to social worker positions in the GS-0185 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 by going to http://vaww.va.gov/OHRM/T38Hybrid/.
- English Language Proficiency. Candidates must be proficient in spoken and written English to be appointed as authorized by 38 U.S.C. § 7403(f).
GS 11 Grade Determinations: In addition to the basic requirements for employment, the following criteria must be met when determining the grade of candidates
- 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. NOTE: For appointment licensure or certification at this level please refer to paragraph 3c.
- Education. In addition to meeting basic requirements, 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.
- One year of experience equivalent to the GS- 9 this grade level- social workers are considered to be at the entry level and are closely supervised, as they are not yet functioning at the independent practice level conferred by independent licensure or certification. Social workers at the GS-9 entry level are typically assigned to program areas that do not require specialized knowledge or experience. Duties may include but are not limited to: identifying behaviors or symptoms of abuse, neglect or exploitation; providing education on advance directives and advanced care planning; providing social work case management; acting as an advocate with appropriate VA and community service providers/agencies when it serves the best interest of the Veteran and family members/caregiver; assessing the psychosocial functioning and needs of Veterans and their family members identifying the Veteran’s strengths, weaknesses, coping skills and psychosocial acuity, in collaboration with the Veteran, family, and interdisciplinary treatment teams; maintaining a current network of internal and external resources to educate the Veteran and/or family members/caregivers and assist with the appropriate referrals. Since social workers at this level are not practicing at an independent level, they should not be assigned to program areas where independent practice is required, such as in a CBOC, unless there is a licensed social worker in the program area who can provide supervision for practice. GS-9 social workers provide psychosocial services in the assigned area under supervision.
- Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. In addition to the experience above, candidates must demonstrate all of the following KSAs:
(a) Knowledge of community resources, how to make appropriate referrals to community and other governmental agencies for services, and ability to coordinate services.
(b) 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.
(c) 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.
(d) 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.
(e) 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.
- Working with clients who have mental illness
- Working with clients who are not in stable housing and/or identified as homeless,
- Providing evidence-based psychotherapies including but not limited to: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Interpersonal Therapy (IPT), Motivational Interviewing (MI), Problem Solving Therapy (PST),
- Working in an outpatient mental health
- Adapting technology and computer assisted programs to deliver treatments and improve treatment outcomes
References: VA Regulations, specifically VA Handbook 5005/120, Part II, Appendix G39 Social Worker Qualification Standard.
The full performance level of this vacancy is 11.
Physical Requirements: The work is primarily sedentary. The employee may sit comfortably in an office or clinic to perform the work. However, there may be some sitting, walking, standing, bending and carrying items such as books, papers and files are required. When carrying out job related duties, it may be necessary for the incumbent to travel to MEDVAMC and/or into the community to meet with Veterans, their families, community partners, internal/external stakeholders and other representatives to complete official job related duties.
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.
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 to fax a document you do not have in electronic form, view the following link for information regarding an Alternate Application.
Post expires at 11:59pm on Saturday September 30th, 2023