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Serves as a Physical Therapy Assistant assigned to the Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Section. The primary function of this position is to participate in the planning and implementation of the STRIDE Program. STRIDE (AssiSTed EaRly MobIlity for HospitalizedD Older VEterans). is an evidence-based, inpatient walking program designed to decrease functional decline for older adults during and after hospitalization. This position is at John Cochran, not Jefferson Barracks. 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. Education: Individuals must meet at least one of the requirements: (1) Associate degree from an accredited community college, junior college, college or university in a physical therapy assistant education program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education; OR (2) Graduate of foreign physical therapy assistant degree programs that meet the educational requirement and have successfully passed the National Physical Therapy Exam (NPTE) for PTAs. OR (3) Graduate of military physical therapy assistant programs that meet the educational requirement and have successfully passed the NPTE for PTAs. Licensure: Current, full, active and unrestricted license as a PTA in a State, Territory or Commonwealth (i.e. Puerto Rico) of the United States, or District of Columbia. (1) Exceptions for Non-Licensed Physical Therapy Assistant. (a) Non-licensed applicants who otherwise meet the minimum qualification requirements, but who do not possess state licensure, may be appointed, pending licensure, as a graduate PTA on a full-time temporary appointment under the authority of 38 U.S.C. § 7401(a)(1)(B) and not to exceed two years in accordance with the timeframe in 38 U.S.C. § 7405(c)(2)(B). (b) Non-licensed individuals shall only provide care under the direct supervision of a licensed PTA or PT who meets all state regulatory requirements. (c) Non-licensed individuals may only be appointed at the entry level and may not be promoted/converted until licensure is obtained. (d) Temporary appointments of non-licensed PTAs may not be extended beyond two years or converted to a new temporary appointment. (e) Failure to Obtain Licensure. In all cases, non-licensed PTAs must actively pursue meeting requirements for licensure starting from the date of their appointment. At the time of appointment, the supervisor will provide the non-licensed PTA with the written requirements for licensure, including the time by which the license must be obtained and the consequences for not becoming licensed by the deadline. Failure to obtain licensure during this time period may result in termination of employment. 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: (1) Creditable Experience. To be creditable, the experience must have required the use of knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) associated with the current scope of PTA practice. Experience must have been gained as a licensed PTA. (2) Part-Time Experience. Part-time experience as a PTA is creditable according to its relationship to the full-time workweek. For example, a PTA would receive 1 week of full-time credit for each two 2 weeks of half-time work. In addition to the basic requirements outlined in above, the following criteria must be met when determining the grade of candidates. GS-8: Experience: In addition to the basic requirements, 1 year of experience comparable to the next lower grade level. In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs: 1. Ability to independently implement treatment plan using knowledge of techniques related to the patient's disability and needs. 2. Ability to independently provide varied and multifaceted physical therapy interventions based on the established care plan (e.g., therapeutic exercise, balance, body mechanics, flexibility, strength, gait training, neuromotor development, physical agents, functional training, etc.). 3. Knowledge of physical therapy data collection and assessment techniques in order to perform specific interventions and to monitor and capture progress of the patient/client. 4. Ability to instruct patient on varied interventions to provide materials to enhance compliance with home programs. 5. Ability to modify treatment techniques based on the learning needs and perceptions of the patient. 6. Ability to identify critical changes (e.g. vital signs, pain, mobility and alertness) in patient conditions to determine their medical and functional status. 7. Ability to work with PTs and other interdisciplinary healthcare team members to evaluate patient information for planning, modifying and coordinating treatment programs and discharge planning. Preferred Experience: References: VA Handbook 5005/139 Part II, Appendix G23, Physical Therapy Assistant Qualification Standard, dated January 28, 2021. The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-8. Physical Requirements: The work involves regular and recurring physical exertion with varying periods of sitting, standing, bending, walking, squatting/stooping, twisting, climbing stairs, pushing, pulling, grasping and reaching over shoulders. Fine manipulation, including keyboarding, is required intermittently for up to 2 to 3 hours per day. Requirements for lifting will generally be up to 35 pounds with occasions of 25 to 50 lbs. required particularly in transferring of patients in accordance with the Safe Patient Handling Program Directive. ["Duties of the position include performance of professional work in applying highly specialized rehabilitation skills, concepts, and techniques and administering a full range of physical therapy procedures to meet complex treatment objectives for Veteran's whose illness is acute, critical and/or chronic in nature. Duties include but are not limited to: Completes a review of patient data, including medical history and review of physical therapy evaluation. Implements and coordinates treatment plans and selects techniques and sequence of activities to help patients meet their needs in collaboration with the supervising PT. Provides physical therapy procedures within a broad diagnostic spectrum of diseases and disorders. Progresses patients toward the rehabilitation goals for those with both simple and complex medical problems independently. Provides a full range of Physical Therapy treatment using a wide variety of evidence-based treatment techniques and modalities. Independently implements selected components of interventions identified in the plan of care established by the PT. Recognizes contraindications, precautions, and appropriateness of treatment prescribed by supervising PT and consults with supervising PT if these are in question. . Participates in family and multidisciplinary team meetings to identify patients' needs, report on patients' goals and progress and to assist in planning patients' overall treatment plan. The incumbent considers the age, medical and psychological status of the patient as it relates to patient's ability to understand directions, provide effective self-assessment, and participate safely and appropriately in the treatment program. Communicates and collaborates with supervising PT on patients' response to treatment, progress toward goals, and assists in modifying treatment plans to optimize patient outcomes. Identifies and communicates when patients' maximum level of function has been attained. Communicates any recommendations for referrals to other healthcare professionals. Provides patient and their families/caregivers with education, information and training regarding the nature of their disease or disability, treatment plan and goals and home program. Consults with referring providers (MDs, PAs, NPs) as needed. Independently manages time to allow adequate time for direct patient care, administrative tasks, and patient care conferences. Collaborates with PT staff for coordination of patient care. Assists in the maintenance of the clinic and exhibits good safety practices following proper safety & infection policies and procedures per VA, The Joint Commission, CARF, OSHA, etc. Participates in the PTA peer review process, as assigned. Assists with maintaining all clinic supplies at safe levels to prevent shortages. Actively participates in his/her own professional development by maintaining an appropriate level of education in contemporary physical therapy practice. Attends continuing education courses, PM&R section inservices, hospital-wide inservices, and journal clubs. Attends and completes mandatory inservice training. Incumbent may provide staff inservices, formal presentations, or other trainings to the treatment team. Serves as clinical instructor, when assigned, for the training and supervision of part time and/or full-time physical therapist assistant student affiliates. Provides necessary guidance, direction, and general supervision to physical therapy co-operative education students, volunteers, and/or CWT workers assigned to the PM&RS clinic. Completes the training/education facility requirements annually including mandatory (i.e. CPR, Fire, Safety, etc.) and other educational activities offered by the facility. Serves as a resource to new graduate physical therapist assistants in clinical patient care issues. All interactions with customers, including veterans, families, employees, peers, and the general public are conducted consistent with the VA customer service values Consistently responds to patients', families', visitors, and co-workers' requests for assistance in a timely, friendly and cooperative manner. Consistently communicates with customers (e.g., veterans, family members, the general public) in a courteous, tactful, and helpful manner. Communication, both oral and/or written, is provided promptly and is responsive to the customer's needs. Routinely interacts in a professional and courteous manner with managers and other employees to facilitate the accomplishment of the work of the organization. Daily performance must demonstrate the ability to adjust to change or work under pressure in a pleasant manner, handle differences of opinion in a professional manner, follow instructions conscientiously, and to function as a team member, helping the group effort where possible. Work Schedule: Monday-Friday, 8:00 am to 4:30 pm.\nTelework: Not available\nVirtual: This is not a virtual position."]
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.