Nursing Assistant, Mental Health
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.
- United States Citizenship: Non-citizens may only be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Policy.
- Education or Training. One year above high school with courses related to the NA occupation. Completion of an intensive, specialized, occupation-related course of study of less than one year as a nursing assistant may also meet in full the experience requirements for GS-3.
- English Language Proficiency. NAs must be proficient in spoken and written English in accordance with VA Handbook 5005, part II, chapter 3, section A, paragraph 3j.
- Grade Determinations:
Experience and Education. None beyond the basic requirements.
Assignments. Individuals assigned as GS-3 [NAs] are considered to be at the entry level and are closely supervised.
Experience. One year of specialized experience as a [NA] or experience in another medical field (licensed practical nurse, health technician, hospital corpsman, etc.), performing technical and nursing skills requiring knowledge of the human physical and emotional states, therapeutic communication, and technical skills required for basic and intermediate treatments;
(b) Education. Successful completion of 2 years above high school in an accredited institution with courses related to nursing care, health care or in a field of study appropriate to the specialization of the position, such as education in a program for psychology, psychiatric, or operating room technicians; AND
(c) Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSAs). In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs:
1. Ability to provide a range of patient/resident care and contribute to the completion of the nurse care plan and recovery of patients/residents.
2. Ability to observe patients/residents' or resident's physical or emotional status and refer deviations and/or problems to supervisor in a timely manner.
3. Ability to properly use equipment, materials and supplies in simple diagnostic and treatment procedures such as bladder scan, continuous passive motion device, blood glucose monitoring machine, specimen collection, etc.
4. Ability to communicate effectively with patients/residents, their families and other health professionals.
1. Individuals assigned as GS-4 NAs are considered to be at the intermediate or developmental level and are closely supervised. NAs at this grade level function as a member of the nursing care team and assist higher graded NAs, licensed nursing staff, and other members of the care team in the care of patients/residents receiving outpatient care, home or community living care or other patients/residents who are in acute, sub-acute, or chronic states of illness. The significant factor is that they provide care under close supervision and refer issues/questions to supervisors, higher graded NAs or other healthcare professionals.
2. In this role, the Nursing Assistant functions as a member of the nursing care team and assists higher graded NAs, licensed nursing staff, and other members of the care team in the care of patients/residents receiving outpatient care, home or community living care, or other patients who are in acute, sub-acute, or chronic states of illness. The Nursing Assistant in this role provides care under close supervision and refers issues/questions to supervisors, higher graded NAs, or other healthcare professionals.
Experience. One year of progressively responsible assignments and experience equivalent to the GS-4 level which demonstrates knowledge, skills, and abilities that are directly related to the specific assignment. In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the professional KSAs in subparagraph (c) below;
Education. Successful completion of a 4-year course of study above high school leading to a bachelor's degree that included 24 semester hours of courses related to health care or possession of a bachelor's degree; AND
1. Ability to assist in the full range of nursing care to patients/residents with physical and/or behavioral problems in a hospital, long term care or outpatient setting under the direction of a Registered Nurse and/or Licensed Vocational Nurse/Licensed Practical Nurse.
2. Ability to communicate orally with patients/residents, families, interdisciplinary team and other personnel. This includes serving as a preceptor to new [NAs] by assisting with the coordination of their orientation and overseeing/assessing their practical experience while in a clinical setting.
3. Ability to recognize and react to emergent patient/resident care situations and intervene while waiting for assistance. For example, recognizing need for basic life support, controlling bleeding and assisting with behavior crisis, etc.
Assignment. This is the full performance level for NAs. NAs at this grade level function as a member of the nursing care team and assist licensed nursing staff in the care of patients/residents receiving outpatient care, home or community living care or other patients/residents who are in acute, sub acute or chronic states of illness. The distinguishing factor is that patient/resident assignments typically involve more complex nursing needs which can vary within a range of predictable to unpredictable requirements. NAs at this level also assume more of a peer education/mentorship role.
References: VA Handbook Part II, Appendix G46
The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-5. The actual grade at which an applicant may be selected for this vacancy is in the range of GS-3 to GS-5.
Physical Requirements: The incumbent must be physically and mentally able to efficiently perform the essential functions of the position without hazard to themselves or others; be able to navigate the facility, write and use a key board and telephone. This position requires visual acuity, keen hearing, clear distinctive speech, and manual dexterity. Employee will be required to assist with transferring/lifting/moving patients, pushing/pulling wheelchairs, gurneys/beds or equipment which may require, stooping, bending, kneeling, twisting, sitting lifting or carrying live weight up to 35 lbs. and walking without restrictions. The incumbent may be exposed to infected patients and contaminated materials and may be required to don protective clothing in isolation situations. The incumbent may occasionally be exposed to patients who are combative secondary to delirium, dementia, or psychiatric disorders. The incumbent must be a mature, flexible, sensible individual capable of working effectively in stressful situations, able to shift priorities based on patient needs. The incumbent must be able to navigate all areas of the facility, use a keyboard, perform CPR (Bart trained) when necessary, and perform other activities of the position without any restrictions. Reasonable accommodations may be considered in determining an applicant's ability to perform the duties of the position. Selected applicants will be required to complete an online onboarding process.
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.