HEALTH TECHNICIAN (OPHTHALMOLOGY)

Website US Veterans Health Administration

DutiesSummaryOphthalmology Technicians in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) support Ophthalmologists in diagnosis, treatment, prevention, follow-up care and patient counseling. At the full performance Technicians performs a range of standard, but complex, diagnostic procedures, educates patients, legal representatives, medical students and residents. Technicians may perform direct patient care services under the supervision of Ophthalmologists.ResponsibilitiesGS-5 Health Technician (Ophthalmology)An Entry Level Ophthalmology Technician will respond to the needs of the staff Ophthalmologists and Optometrists. Limited routine assignments under daily direct supervision is an integral part of the position.Clinical Responsibilities include but are not limited to the following:Obtains and records vital signs including blood pressure, pulse, and glucose levels;Participates in performance of quality assurance activities such as staff meetings, mandatory educational in-services, quality control reports, systems redesign, and team and morale improvement.GS-6 Health Technician (Ophthalmology)A Developmental Level Ophthalmology Technician operates and monitors commonly used equipment performing basic screening procedures. Some assignments at this level also include developmental duties involving more complex procedures performed under supervision.Clinical Responsibilities include but are not limited to the following:Obtains an accurate medical and ophthalmic history;Measures and records visual acuity;Administers anesthetic eye drops;Responsible for performing basic tonometry, Estimates the anterior chamber depth;Records a simple spectacle reading through automated lensometry.GS-7 Health Technician (Ophthalmology)A Developmental Level 2 Ophthalmology Technician will respond to the needs of the staff ophthalmologists and Optometrist, the supervisory technician or other designated administrative supervisor who will maintain daily supervision and guidance. Basic screening assignments under daily direct supervision is an integral part of the position.Clinical Responsibilities include but are not limited to the following:Triages patient phone calls or requests;Ensures exam rooms are stocked with adequate supplies;Instructs patients on administration of eye drops and post-operative instructions;Accurately measures, compares, and evaluates pupillary responses;Administers eye drops to dilate pupils;Performs basic color vision screening;Performs basic visual field testing (using Amsler grid or automated equipment);Performs basic imaging testing such as corneal topography; external photography;Performs basic ocular testing such as pachymetry, tear production with test strips, glare testing, stereo acuity, contrast sensitivity, potential acuity meter, measuring spectacles using both automated and manual lensometry and transposing cylinders;Performs autorefractor to determine spectacle prescription.GS-8 Health Technician (Ophthalmology)The GS-8 level is the full performance level for this assignment. The Health Technician (Ophthalmology) at this level performs a range of standard but complex diagnostic procedures. In addition to the duties expected of the GS-7 level*, the following clinical duties and responsibilities are expected at the GS-8 level:Clinical Responsibilities include but are not limited to the following:Checks and performs calibration of technical ophthalmology screening instruments.Obtains patient physical history, to include chief complaint; reason for visit; pertinent signs and symptoms; current medication allergies; past ocular and general medical history both ocular and general; family history both ocular and general; social history; and review of medications and allergies, including current ocular prescription and non-prescription medications.Accurately tests visual acuity at distance and near, with and without correction or with and without a pinhole.Measures eyeglass prescription using manual or automated lensometer, recording sphere, cylinder, axis, and prism in both plus and minus cylinder.Performs pupil evaluation recording pupil size, shape, symmetry, reaction to light and accommodation.Performs swinging flashlight test to detect a relative afferent pupillary defect.Performs basic refractometry utilizing an auto refraction or habitual glass prescription in the phoropter.Instills eye medications (drops or ointments, including anesthetic, dye, dilating drops, cycloplegic drops, or antibiotics).Measures intraocular pressure with standard techniques, including Goldmann applanation tonometry.Work Schedule: Monday – Friday, 8:00 am to 4:30 pmTelework: Not AvailableVirtual: This is not a virtual position.Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not AuthorizedFinancial Disclosure Report: Not requiredTravel RequiredOccasional travel – You may be expected to travel for this position.Supervisory statusNoPromotion Potential8Job family (Series)0640 Health Aid And TechnicianSimilar jobsAssistants, MedicalMedical AssistantsOphthalmic Medical TechniciansTechnicians, Ophthalmic MedicalRequirementsRequirementsConditions of EmploymentYou must be a U.S. Citizen to apply for this jobDesignated and/or random drug testing may be requiredSelective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959You may be required to serve a probationary periodSubject to a background/security investigationMust be proficient in written and spoken EnglishSelected applicants will be required to complete an online onboarding processQualificationsBASIC REQUIREMENTSUnited States Citizenship. Non-citizens may only be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Policy.Experience and Education(1) Experience. One year of experience in a health care field, such as but not limited to nursing, medical assistant, or health technician. OR,(2) Education. Two years above high school with a minimum of six semester hours directly related to a health care field or associate’s degree in a health care related degree. OR,(3) Experience/Education Combination. Equivalent combinations of experience and education are qualifying. Examples are listed below:(a) Six months of experience in the health care field; and one year above high school; or(b) Six months of experience in the health care field and successful completion of a course for health care technicians, hospital corpsmen, medical service specialists, or ophthalmology technicians given by the U.S. Armed Forces; or(c) Six months of experience in the health care field and completion of an independent study course in Ophthalmic Medical Assisting.Certification. All applicants must be certified as a Certified Ophthalmic Assistant (COA) with the Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology (JCAHPO). The COA certification is JCAHPO’s entry-level certification examination for a Health Technician (Ophthalmology).SEE ADDITIONAL INFORMATION FOR EXCEPTIONS AND FAILURE TO OBTAIN CERTIFICATION UNDER ADDITIONAL INFORMATION.Grandfathering Provision. All persons employed in VHA as a Health Technician (Ophthalmology) on the effective date of this qualification standard are considered to have met all qualification requirements for the title, series and grade held, including certification requirements. For employees who do not meet all the basic requirements in this standard, but who met the qualifications applicable to the position at the time they were appointed to it, the following provisions apply:(1) Such employees may be reassigned, promoted up to and including the full performance (journeyman) level, or changed to lower grade within the occupation, but may not be promoted beyond the journey level or placed in supervisory or managerial positions.(2) Health Technicians (Ophthalmology) who were appointed on a temporary basis prior to the effective date of the qualification standard may not have their temporary appointment extended or be reappointed, on a temporary or permanent basis, until they fully meet the basic requirements of the standard.(3) Employees initially grandfathered into this occupation, who subsequently obtain additional education and/or certification that meet all the basic requirements of the qualification standard must maintain the required credentials as a condition of employment in the occupation.(4) Health Technicians (Ophthalmology) who are converted to title 38 hybrid status under this provision and subsequently leave the occupation lose protected status and must meet the full VA qualification standard requirements in effect at the time of reentry to the occupation.Foreign Education. To be creditable, education completed outside the U.S. must have been submitted to a private organization that specializes in the interpretation of foreign educational credentials and such education must have been deemed at least equivalent to that gained in conventional U.S. programs.Physical Requirements. If selected you will be required to pass a pre-employment physical exam.English Language Proficiency. Health Technicians (Ophthalmology) must be proficient in spoken and written English as required by 38 U.S.C. 7402(d) and 38 U.S.C. 7407(d).GRADE REQUIREMENTS:Creditable Experience.(1) Knowledge of Current Health Technician (Ophthalmology) Practice. To be creditable, the experience must have demonstrated the knowledge, skills, and abilities associated with a health care field or knowledge, skills, and abilities related to the current occupation. Experience satisfying this requirement may be paid or non-paid employment in the health care field.(2) Quality of Experience. Qualifying experience must be at a level comparable to Health Technician (Ophthalmology) experience at the next lower grade level of the position being filled. For all assignments above the full performance level, the higher level duties must consist of significant 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 Health Technician (Ophthalmology) is creditable according to its relationship to the full time work week. For example, a Health Technician (Ophthalmology) employed 20 hours per week, or on a ½ time basis, would receive one full-time work week credit for each two weeks of service.Grade Determinations.In addition to the basic requirements for employment, the following criteria must be met when determining the grade of candidates.Health Technician (Ophthalmology), GS-5 (Entry Level)Experience or Education. None beyond the basic requirements.Health Technician (Ophthalmology), GS-6 (Developmental Level 1)Experience. One year of experience equivalent to the GS-5 grade level.Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSAs). In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate all of the following KSAs:1. Knowledge of general outpatient clinical policies and procedures in a healthcare environment;2. Ability to obtain, document and record demographic and medical information from patients in order to develop an accurate medical record;3. Ability to use basic ophthalmic equipment; and4. Knowledge of basic disinfection of non-critical reusable medical equipment.Health Technician (Ophthalmology), GS-7 (Developmental Level 2)Experience. One year of experience equivalent to the GS-6 grade level.Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSA). In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate all of the following KSAs:1. Knowledge of anatomy and function of the eye and basic ocular pharmacology;2. Knowledge of outpatient eye care policies and procedures in a health care environment;3. Ability to use basic ophthalmic diagnostic equipment to perform preliminary ocular testing;4. Ability to perform minor extraocular surgical assisting; and5. Ability to provide eye care patient education.Health Technician (Ophthalmology), GS-8 (Full Performance Level)Experience. One year of experience equivalent to the GS-7 grade level.Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSA). In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate all of the following KSAs:1. Ability to perform advanced tonometry and pupil evaluation;2. Ability to perform calculations for selection of intraocular lens;3. Knowledge of clinic based ophthalmic surgical assisting;4. Knowledge of eye anatomy and physiology;5. Knowledge of medication effects and proper instillation in the eye;6. Knowledge of optics; and7. Knowledge of proper cleaning and maintenance of clinic equipment.References: VA HANDBOOK 5005/98 PART II APPENDIX G52, February 7, 2018The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-8. The actual grade at which an applicant may be selected for this vacancy is GS-5 to GS-8.Physical Requirements: The position requires the operation of multiple devices for the examination of patients. Dexterity of hand-eye and hand-eye-foot coordination is essential and testing may involve standing for extended periods of time with arms at shoulder height. Frequent stooping, bending, or kneeling is required. You must have excellent corrected binocular vision to perform the complex duties required.EducationIMPORTANT: 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.Additional informationADDITIONAL INFORMATION FOR EXCEPTIONS AND FAILURE TO OBTAIN CERTIFICATION.Exception. Non-certified applicants who otherwise meet the minimum qualification requirements may be appointed as a graduate Health Technician (Ophthalmology) under the authority of38 U.S.C. 7405(c)(2)(B). The appointing official may waive the requirement of certification for a period not to exceed two years for a Health Technician (Ophthalmology) that provides care under the supervision of an Ophthalmologist. The exception only applies below the full performance level. For grade levels at or above the full performance level the candidate must be certified. Failure to obtain COA certification during that period is justification for termination of the temporary appointment and may result in termination of employment.Failure to Obtain Certification. In all cases, the Health Technician (Ophthalmology) must actively pursue meeting certification requirements starting from the date of appointment. At the time of appointment, the supervisor will provide the uncertified Health Technician (Ophthalmology) with the written requirement to obtain certification, the date by which the certification must be acquired, and the consequences for not becoming certified by the deadline. Failure to become certified within two years from date of appointment will result in removal from the Health Technician (Ophthalmology), GS-0640 series and may result in termination of employment.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. VA may offer newly-appointed Federal employee’s credit for their job-related non-federal experience or active duty uniformed military service. 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.It is the policy of the VA to not deny employment to those that have faced financial hardships or periods of unemployment.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.Veterans and Transitioning Service Members: Please visit the VA for Vets site for career-search tools for Veterans seeking employment at VA, career development services for our existing Veterans, and coaching and reintegration support for military service members.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.How You Will Be EvaluatedYou will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE. Your application, résumé, C.V., and/or supporting documentation will be verified. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect consideration for employment.Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religions; spiritual; community; student; social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.Background checks and security clearanceSecurity clearance<Show more

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