VASTLHCS is seeking to fill one full-time Blind Rehabilitation Specialist, VIST Coordinator position in St. Louis, MO. The VIST Coordinator plans, develops, implements, directs and evaluates the Visual Impairment Service (VIST) Team program at the VHA sites within his or her catchment area. 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: United States Citizenship: Non-citizens may only be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Policy. English Language Proficiency. Candidates will not be appointed under authority of 38 U.S.C. chapters 73 or 74, to serve in a direct patient-care capacity in VHA who are not proficient in written and spoken English. See Chapter 2, section D, paragraph 5a, this part. Education: The applicant must have earned: (a) A bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university with a major field of study in blind or vision rehabilitation, closely related program in rehabilitation, special education for the visually impaired, family and consumer science education, or technology and industrial arts education OR, (b) A bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university (without a major field of study as outlined above??? that included, or was supplemented by, at least one of the following: At least 30 semester hours of directly related, upper level undergraduate courses (e.g., at least 200-course level or higher, or as identified by the college or university). One full year of directly related graduate level coursework (typically at least 15 - 18 semester hours). A certificate from an accredited college or university in the core curriculum in orientation and mobility, vision rehabilitation therapy, assistive technology for blind and visually impaired individuals, or low vision therapy and a directly related practicum/internship in the occupation, either included in the degree or post-degree. Foreign Graduates must have proof of a minimum of a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university (or foreign equivalent, as verified through an independent credential evaluation company), with a specialization in blind rehabilitation. Certification. Required at the GS-11 grade level and above (1) Applicants must possess at least one active, current, full and unrestricted certification to be eligible for appointment. Certification must be granted by the Academy for Certification of Vision Rehabilitation & Education Professionals (ACVREP), or another equivalent, closely related professional credential in special education or rehabilitation. NOTE: The ACVREP administers four certification programs: Low Vision Therapy, Orientation and Mobility, Assistive Technology Instruction and Vision Rehabilitation Therapy. They may then use the designation for the certification they hold (as listed in subparagraph (2)) below: (2) BRS who provide the following service must obtain certification granted by ACVREP as follows: (a) Orientation and mobility training - Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialists (COMS®). (b) Communication and daily living therapy - Certified Vision Rehabilitation Therapists (CVRT®). (c) Low vision therapy - Certified Low Vision Therapists (CLVT®). (d) Assistive Technology - Certified Assistive Technology Instructional Specialists (CATIS®). (3) BRS Advanced Practitioners at the GS-13 grade level must possess two certifications awarded by ACVREP. (4) BRS VIST Coordinators may be drawn from traditional blind/vision rehabilitation backgrounds, and from counseling backgrounds such as social work, vocational rehabilitation counseling, etc. VIST Coordinators must be credentialed/certified through: (a) Any certification via the ACVREP, OR, (b) Individuals appointed based on experience as a Social Worker must be licensed or certified by a state to independently practice social work at the master's degree level. A doctoral degree in social work may not be substituted for the master's degree in social work. If appointed as a VIST Coordinator, Social Workers are appointed to the GS-0601 series, but must still maintain a full, valid, and unrestricted independent license or certification to remain qualified for employment, OR, (c) Certification via the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC) Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, (CRC), OR, (d) Individuals appointed based on experience in other health care occupations must be licensed or certified by a state to independently practice in their field. If appointed as a VIST Coordinator, such individuals are appointed to the GS-0601 series, but must still maintain their full, valid, and unrestricted independent license or certification in their occupation to remain qualified for employment. Examples of occupations may include but [are not limited to Marriage and Family Therapist or Licensed Mental Health Counselor. May qualify based on being covered by the Grandfathering Provision as described in the VA Qualification Standard for this occupation (only applicable to current VHA employees who are in this occupation and meet the criteria). Grade Determinations: GS-12 applicants must meet the following requirements: Experience. In addition to meeting the basic requirements, completion of a minimum of one year of progressively complex experience equivalent to GS-11 grade level. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. The candidate must demonstrate all the following KSAs: Skill to effectively communicate both orally and in writing with staff at all organizational levels, with Veterans and their family members, with community groups, and individuals with varying degrees of understanding. Ability to assess Veterans having diverse and multiple disabilities to make recommendations for therapeutic interventions. Skill in writing a blind/vision rehabilitation plan that includes evaluation information from multiple disciplines and contains observable, measurable goals that identify specific outcomes. Knowledge of VA and non-VA blind and low vision rehabilitation treatment programs. Skill in interpersonal relationships dealing with patients, employees, other team leaders, managers, and other stakeholders. Knowledge of psychological, rehabilitation, and counseling theories and principles. Ability to coordinate with various resources to identify and refer Veterans to suitable training programs. Ability to apply decision-making principles to adjust programs on a day-to-day basis, to develop short term and long-range goals, and to plan for future utilization of resources. Certification. VIST Coordinators must meet the one of the following certification requirements: Certification via the ACVREP; Licensure via the Social Worker Licensure Board; Certification via the CRCC; Equivalent and relevant professional credential in counseling or rehabilitation. [Examples of other health care occupations may include but are not limited to Marriage and Family Therapists or Licensed Mental Health Counselors.] Preferred Experience: References: VA HANDBOOK 5005/109 PART II APPENDIX G41 The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-12. Physical Requirements: The work requires regular and recurring exertion such as standing or walking for a short period of time; frequent bending; reaching above the shoulder; stooping to set up and take apart equipment and apparatus; moderate lifting and carrying (up to 40 pounds), pushing, or pulling objects. The work requires the ability to read typewritten material and cope with a variety of complex situations due to the diversity of patients, duties and responsibilities. ["incumbent plans, develops, implements, directs, and evaluates the Visual Impairment Service Team program at the VHA sites within his or her catchment area. Responsible for the coordination of all services for visually impaired Veterans and Service members and their families through the Visual Impairment Services Team. Case management duties may include cases that are both difficult and complex both in terms of the severity of the visual impairment and the presence of complicating physical and emotional factors impinging on treatment. Functions independently in a number of settings including hospitals, clinics, rehabilitation centers, long-term care facilities, educational institutions, and home environments. The work environment may be in an office, clinical setting, classroom, private home, VA grounds, nursing home, community sites, and hospitals. Manages patient care and support services to an adult population of patients which is characterized by a very significant number of older male patients as well as young OEF/OIF/OND Veterans who may have wound and trauma related vision loss. Tailors patient care and support services to meet the needs of the individual patient. This includes the responsibility for assessment of each patient's needs and assuring the delivery of services that are responsive to the concerns of individual patients to the extent possible. Develops a cache of educational materials, in a variety of media that can be utilized to help achieve VIST outreach goals and objectives and providing in-service educational classes for VA and non-VA agencies and personnel, and seeking to improve others' awareness with regard to blindness issues. Utilizes developed methodologies to identify Veterans who are eligible for VIST program services, to include identifying blind Veterans from VA medical center diagnosis codes entered in their electronic medical record Educates VA medical center staff on the functional implications of vision loss and on blind rehabilitation matters. Responsible for the coordination and overview of all of the Veteran's blind rehabilitation needs. Determining the intensity of services based upon clinical judgment and the Veteran's goals Flagging VIST-eligible Veterans' patient records so that medical center staff who access patients' records electronically are alerted to the Veteran's visual status. Performs assessments to establish Veterans' needs as they relate to the continuum of vision and rehabilitation treatment services. Refers Veterans to the appropriate service component in the continuum of care for visually impaired Veterans. Develops focused treatment plans containing goals to meet the Veterans' needs. Provides follow-up for rehabilitation services that the Veteran has received. Maintains effective communication with all of the BRS field elements to maximize Veterans' blind and vision rehabilitation outcomes. Provides eligible Veterans on the VIST roster with an initial benefits review, and subsequent annual benefits reviews thereafter. Must be knowledgeable with respect to all VA and non-VA benefits that may serve to enhance the lives of qualified Veterans. Additionally, the VIST Coordinator may assist Veterans in initiating action to apply for benefits. VIST Coordinators are also aware of Veterans Service Organizations that assist Veterans with regard to the acquisition of benefits, and the VIST Coordinator may refer a Veteran to one or more of these agencies. The VIST Coordinator assists the Veteran and their family members with the issues surrounding the emotional adjustment aspects of blindness. The VIS Team and VIST Coordinator may draw on their own professional expertise to personally assist the Veteran and the Veteran's family members in this process, or the VIST Coordinator may make a referral to an appropriate clinician to assist. The VIST Coordinator may recommend issuance of prosthetic equipment for blind and visually impaired Veterans in accordance with VHA policies. If the issuance of a prosthetic item is deemed appropriate and subsequently approved, then the VIST Coordinator may request authorization of funds with the intent of utilizing professionally qualified personnel to train the Veteran to appropriately use, care for and maintain the prosthetic device. The VIST Coordinator convenes and leads a support group for Veterans and Servicemembers with visual impairment and their families or may partner with another entity to provide such support Duty Station: This position is at the John Cochran division, but may be changed to any other VASTLHCS location based on the needs of the medical center."]
OUR MISSION: To fulfill President Lincoln's promise "To care for those who have served in our nation's military and for their families, caregivers, and survivors" - 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 whole health care to Veterans?Readying Warriors and Caring for Heroes! This position is located within Surgical Services at the CAPT James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center (FHCC) in North Chicago, IL. The FHCC is a first-of-its-kind partnership between the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA), and Department of Navy (DoN)/Department of Defense (DoD). It is larger than just a single facility, but rather it is a fully-integrated medical care facility with a single combined VA and Navy mission. The combined mission of the FHCC means active duty military and their family members, military retirees, and eligible veterans receive health care at this facility.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. Join the FHCC team of energetic, career-minded professionals! For additional information, click onhttp://www.lovell.fhcc.va.gov/index.asp.