Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration Orthotist/Prosthetist (Advanced Practitioner) in Brockton, Massachusetts
Summary The Non-Supervisory Orthotist/Prosthetist (Advanced Practitioner) works in Prosthetics and Sensory Aids Service at the VA Boston Healthcare System. This is an open and continuous job opportunity announcement. Certificates are issued on an unannounced periodic basis based on requests from management. Applications will be evaluated and referred for selection as vacancies occur within the organization. This announcement may close at any time once all positions are filled. Responsibilities The general responsibility of the Non-Supervisory Orthotist/Prosthetist (Advanced Practitioner) is to provide the most complex clinical and laboratory prosthetic and orthotic services to disabled patients. Included in this series is such work as: Treatment of all amputation levels including upper limb, hip disarticulation levels. Serving as an advisor to physicians, therapists and other medical professionals with regard to indications and contraindications of prosthetic and orthotic componentry, prescription criteria Authorizing the purchase, fabrication or repair of prosthetic devices; Maintaining continuous liaison with manufacturers and dealers of prosthetic supplies, inspecting their facilities and services and participating in the award of prosthetic appliance contracts; Participating in investigative/research project studies by selecting patients as pilot wearers of newly developed prosthetic items, evaluating the usefulness of such items and compiling of data; and Giving technical and administrative advice and assistance on prosthetic problems to other facilities. This work requires a specialized knowledge of the medical and psychological problems directly related to the use of prosthetic devices; and a specialized knowledge and understanding of the fabrication and satisfactory fitting of prosthetic devices. An Orthotist Prosthetist at this level must have analytical ability, social awareness, tact and diplomacy, and good communication skills. The Orthotist-Prosthetist at this level must be able to anticipate the need for action. He/she must also possess the ability to deal effectively with individuals and groups and to adjust to difficult or stressful situations. ABC or BOC Practitioner Certification is required at this level. An Orthotist-Prosthetist at this level may serve as the (NCOPE) Residency Director for the site, or otherwise may be required to directly contribute to the education of Prosthetic-Orthotic Residents. Listed below are the functional tasks for the Non-Supervisory Orthotist/Prosthetist (Advanced Practitioner), GS-667-12: Follows established regulations and procedures to insure patient privacy. Identifies biomechanical condition. Conducts gait analysis, range of motion, coordination and balance, motor skills, and clinical assessment studies in accordance with occupational principles for unusual conditions, multiple complex interrelated conditions, etc. Interviews patients to determine expectations, lifestyle, home/work environment, ability to use the device. Takes necessary measurements, casts or scans to develop positive molds of the affected area of the body, which are used to create the orthosis and/or prosthesis. Recognizes physical abnormalities, deviations, and complicating conditions with potentially life threatening implications. Assesses patient for indications/contra-indications of appropriate treatment protocols and discusses the assessment with the physician/requesting provider for purposes of developing the overall treatment plan. Has considerable influence in the development of the plan. Considers new and emerging technologies in designing unique or innovative devices to accommodate or treat a wide range of complex medical conditions, which include unusual problems or complications. Considers the information developed through the assessment as well as time management workload considerations, designs custom devices using standard components to optimize patient performance for difficult and complex conditions; may include CAD/CAM systems. Selects materials and components to be used in fabrication of the device and determines appropriate equipment to be used in fabrication of the device. Fabricates components, or selects and modifies components, and assembles these into the finished device. Uses CAD/CAM system as appropriate in this process and performs preliminary alignment. Fits the device on the patient, assures preliminary alignment, and performs subsequent dynamic alignment. Assesses and/or modifies fit and function of the device as fabricated and makes appropriate modifications to insure optimum patient outcome. Evaluates patient's ability to don/doff the device, provides training to the patient and/or caregiver in its use and maintenance. This may also include training the clinical staff. Explains procedures and processes to the patient to reduce anxiety and gain support and cooperation in all stages of the process. Provides guidance and direction to lower graded O/P staff. Conducts site surveys of commercial vendors to insure vendor regulatory compliance. Work Schedule: Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Functional Statement #: Orthotist/Prosthetist (Advanced Practitioner), GS-667-12/PD#000000 Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not authorized Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not authorized Financial Disclosure Report: Not required Requirements 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. Qualifications COVERAGE. The following are requirements for appointment as an orthotist, prosthetist, or orthotist/prosthetist in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA). The 667 series includes positions that administer, supervise, or perform work involving designing, fabricating, or fitting orthotic or prosthetic devices to preserve or restore function to patients with disabling conditions of the limbs and spine, or with partial or total absence of limbs. a. The work requires: (1) Knowledge of anatomy, physiology, body mechanics, the application and function of orthoses and/or prostheses, and of the materials and technology available for use in, and fabrication of, such devices; (2) Skill in the use of tools, materials, and specialized equipment; and (3) The ability to deal effectively with patients and their problems and to work with other members of the medical team. BASIC REQUIREMENTS a. Citizenship. Citizen of the United States. b. Education (1) A bachelor's degree or higher in orthotics and prosthetics from a Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) accredited program. OR, (2) A bachelor's degree or higher in any major along with a post-graduate orthotics or prosthetics certificate from a CAAHEP accredited program. c. Foreign Graduates. Graduates of foreign degree programs 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 orthotics and prosthetics. d. Board Certification. Candidates must be board certified by the American Board for Certification in Orthotics and Prosthetics (ABC) or the Board for Orthotist/Prosthetist Certification (BOC) as an orthotist, prosthetist, or orthotist/prosthetist. The board certificate must be current and the applicant must abide by the certifying body's requirements for continuing education. Certification as a technician, pedorthist, assistant or fitter does not meet this requirement. e. Loss of Credential. An employee in this occupation who fails to maintain the required certification must be removed from the occupation which may result in termination of employment. At the discretion of the appointing official, an employee may be reassigned to another occupation for which he/she qualifies if a placement opportunity exists. f. Physical Requirements. See VA Directive and Handbook 5019. g. English Language Proficiency. Orthotists, prosthetists, or orthotist/prosthetists must be proficient in spoken and written as required by 38 U.S.C. 7402(d). GRADE REQUIREMENTS a. Creditable Experience (1) Knowledge of Current Orthotist/Prosthetist Practices. To be creditable, the experience must have demonstrated the use of knowledge, skills, and abilities associated with current professional orthotic and/or prosthetic professional practice. (2) Quality of Experience. The experience must be post-degree, from an accredited training program and include work as a professional orthotist/prosthetist directly related to the position to be filled. Experience satisfying this requirement may be paid or non-paid employment. For all assignments above the full performance level, the higher level duties must consist of significantly larger scope, administrative independence, complexity (difficulty) and range of variety as described in this standard at the specified grade level and be performed by the incumbent at least 25% of the time. (3) Part-Time Experience. Part-time experience as a professional orthotist/prosthetist is creditable according to its relationship to the full-time workweek. For example, an orthotist/prosthetist would receive 1 week of full-time credit for each 2 weeks of half-time work. Grade Determinations. In addition to the basic requirements for employment, the following criteria must be met when determining the grade of candidates. GS-12 (a) Experience. Completion of 1 year of experience equivalent to the next lower grade level as an orthotist/prosthetist functioning as a full member of the clinical team which includes significant involvement in treatment plan development for the most complex types of conditions. (b) Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSA and demonstrate the potential to acquire the assignment-specific KSAs designated by an asterisk (*): 1. Knowledge of regulatory requirements established by the ABC, BOC, the National Committee for Orthotic/Prosthetic Education (NCOPE), the International Association of Orthotists and Prosthetists (IAOP), the American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists (AAOP), Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO), etc. *2. Knowledge of administrative functions including budget development and management, inventory management, space and workload planning, as well as knowledge of the National Prosthetic Patient Database (NPPD), knowledge of the Prosthetic National Software (PNS) package, Decision Support System (DSS), and knowledge of accreditation requirements for orthotic and prosthetic laboratories and certification requirements for individuals. *3. Ability to analyze data and provide reports using CPRS, Vista, DSS, HCPCS codes and other patient database information. *4. Ability to provide training to orthotists/prosthetists in new technologies and innovations in devices. (c) Assignments. For all assignments above the full performance level, the higher-level duties must consist of significant scope, complexity (difficulty) and range of variety and be performed by the incumbent at least 25% of the time. Candidates at this grade level are in one of the following assignments: 1. Advanced Practitioner. The orthotist/prosthetist assignment at this level is intended for smaller, independent laboratories. In addition to functions typical of the GS-11 grade level, the assignment involves responsibility for assuring the accreditation of the laboratory, regulation compliance, and a variety of administrative duties such as developing a budget; managing inventory and resources; overseeing contract employees; planning the orthotics and prosthetics clinical schedule; conducting site surveys of commercial vendors; devising short and long range goals in accordance with local, VISN, and VHA Central Office direction; and conducting quality assurance activities; etc. The orthotist/prosthetist communicates and interacts with physicians, allied health professionals, patients, and caregivers in various interdisciplinary clinical settings, rehabilitation medicine, orthopedics, neurosurgery, vascular care, podiatry, oncology, etc., as a subject matter expert to develop the orthotic and/or prosthetic treatment plan. The work includes complex patient analyses in accordance with established procedures for patients with unusual conditions, multiple complex conditions, interrelated conditions, etc.; assessment of the patient for indications/contra-indications and discussion of the assessment with the physician/requesting provider for the purpose of developing the overall treatment plan with considerable influence in the development of that plan; consideration of new and emerging technologies in designing unique or innovative devices to accommodate or treat a wide range of complex medical conditions which include unusual problems or complications. The orthotist/prosthetist at this level is expected to recognize physical abnormalities, deviations, and complicating conditions with potentially life threatening implications. Reference: VA Handbook 5005/91, Part II, Appendix G32, dated March 21, 2017 Physical Requirements: Be able to lift 50 lbs. Education 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: https://sites.ed.gov/international/recognition-of-foreign-qualifications/. Additional Information 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 an alternate method to submit documents, please reach out to the Agency Contact listed in this Job Opportunity Announcement.