Social Worker - Behavioral Health Interdisciplinary Program
Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration
Location: Erie, Pennsylvania
Internal Number: 699772300
This position is located at the Erie VAMC within Behavioral Health Services. The Social Worker serves as a Behavioral Health Interdisciplinary Program Therapist and will provide services to mentally ill and/or substance abusing Veterans and their significant others. Applicants pending the completion of educational or certification/licensure requirements may be referred and tentatively selected but may not be hired until all requirements are met. Basic Requirements: 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. 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. Exception. 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 at the GS-9 grade level. For the GS-11 grade level and above, the candidate must be licensed or certified. At the time of appointment, the supervisor, chief social work or social work executive will provide the unlicensed/uncertified social worker with the written requirements for licensure or certification, including the time by which the license or certification must be obtained and the consequences for not becoming licensed or certified by the deadline. For appointments at the GS-9 grade level, VHA social workers who are not licensed or certified at the time of appointment must become licensed or certified at the independent, master's level within three years of their appointment as a social worker. A social worker who does not yet have a license that allows independent practice must be supervised by a licensed independent practitioner of the same discipline who is a VA staff member and who has access to the electronic health record. English Language Proficiency. Candidates must be proficient in spoken and written English to be appointed as authorized by 38 U.S.C. § 7403(f). Grade Determinations: In addition to the basic requirements for employment, the following criteria must be met when determining the grade of candidates. Social Worker, GS-9. Experience, Education, and Licensure. None beyond the basic requirements. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate all of the following KSAs: Ability to work with Veterans and family members from various socioeconomic, cultural, ethnic, educational, and other diversified backgrounds utilizing counseling skills. Ability to assess the psychosocial functioning and needs of Veterans and their family members, and to formulate and implement a treatment plan, identifying the Veterans problems, strengths, weaknesses, coping skills, and assistance needed. 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 and communicate with clients, staff, and representatives of community agencies. Fundamental 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. Social Worker, GS-11. 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; OR, 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. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. In addition to the experience above, candidates must demonstrate all of the following 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. 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. 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. 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. 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. Preferred Experience: Mental Health References: VA HANDBOOK 5005, PART II, APPENDIX G39 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-09 to GS-11. Physical Requirements: The work is mostly sedentary and requires sitting, standing, bending and carrying light items (15 lbs.) such as charts, papers and books. Occasional lifting of heavier loads, as in assisting the moving of a patient from a wheelchair to a chair is required. A significant amount of standing and walking up to 4 hours per day is also required. Must perform rapid mental and muscular coordination simultaneously. ["As a member of the interdisciplinary Behavioral Health Clinic (BHC) team, the Behavioral Health Social Worker must form and maintain effective working relationships with staff from the Behavioral Health Clinic, Medical, Nursing, Social Work, Rehabilitation, Chaplain, and Dietetic Services in order to provide patients with an integrated and comprehensive treatment program. Major duties include, but are not limited to: Conducts intake screenings and evaluations of Veterans. Uses the established biopsychosocial admissions criteria to determine the appropriateness of Veterans referred to the BHC for service in the different treatment components. Routinely evaluates the impact that therapeutic interventions have on patient problems. Assesses patients' progress toward meeting treatment goals and objectives. Determines the need for additional assessment of specific problem areas. Conducts and documents a discharge assessment that summarizes the extent to which each problem is resolved and the extent to which additional treatment is needed. Schedules and monitors specimen collection for assessment of substance abuse. Provides individual, group, and family psychotherapy, as well as crisis intervention. Conducts short, medium, long-term in-depth counseling and facilitates both open-ended, process groups; and time-limited, closed, structured groups for patients with substance abuse problems, mental health problems, or co-morbid conditions. Facilitate group counseling and conduct assessments for the Psychosocial Rehabilitation and Recovery Center (PRRC). Develops and, as needed, revises treatment plans. Documents patients' responses to treatment in a manner that facilitates the use of this information by other members of the interdisciplinary team. Gather data during these assessments and progress review sessions in order to help make decisions regarding: a) the need for further assessment by the BHC or Medical Center staff; b) the need to revise the patient's comprehensive treatment plan; c) the patient's readiness to move on to the next treatment week; and d) the appropriateness of referring to a residential facility. Coordinate treatment activities to ensure that each patient is provided with an individualized, integrated, biopsychosocial approach to case management. Conduct a discharge assessment, create a discharge plan, and ensure a referral/contact with a follow-up agency. Participates in BHC committees; provides training to Medical Center and BHC staff through patient review conferences, BHC in-service programs, and medical education presentations; keeps abreast of new developments in the field of behavioral health; and maintains accurate records and data needed for local and national reports. Responsible for designing and conducting group therapy sessions; recommending methods to improve the quality, quantity, and integration of treatment services. Performs other duties as assigned. Work Schedule: 8:00 a.m. - 6:30 p.m. Monday - Thursday Compressed/Flexible: May be authorized for highly qualified candidates Telework: Ad-hoc Virtual: This is not a virtual position. Functional Statement #: 000000 / Social Worker - BHIP Therapist Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized Financial Disclosure Report: Not required"]
Providing Health Care for Veterans: The Veterans Health Administration is America’s largest integrated health care system, providing care at 1,255 health care facilities, including 170 medical centers and 1,074 outpatient sites of care of varying complexity (VHA outpatient clinics), serving 9 million enrolled Veterans each year.