This position is located in the Audiology and Speech Pathology Service at VA Tennessee Valley Healthcare System. The primary duty location will be at the Murfreesboro campus Audiology clinic with travel to outpatient clinics up to 4 days per week as demand for services and space at the outpatient clinics require. The duties and responsibilities are to be carried out in all clinical and other patient care areas involved with the Audiology service. 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. Experience and Education: Experience. Completion of the Department of Labor Apprenticeship Program for Hearing Aid Specialists; OR Education. Successful completion of two academic years above high school that includes coursework related to the field: hearing science, human anatomy and physiology, hearing instrument science, gerontology, psychology or other general healthcare areas. NOTE: There is no combination of education and experience which can be substituted for the basic requirements. Licensure or Registration: Individuals must hold a full, current and unrestricted license or registration to practice as a HIS in a state, territory, commonwealth or the District of Columbia. Loss of Licensure or Registration. A Health Technician (HIS) who fails to maintain the required licensure or registration must be removed from the occupation, which may also result in termination of employment. Board Certification: Individuals must hold active board certification from the National Board for Certification in Hearing Instrument Sciences (NBC-HIS). Loss of Certification. A Health Technician (HIS) who fails to maintain the required board certification must be removed from the occupation, which may also result in termination of employment. Foreign Education: To be creditable, education completed outside the U.S. must be deemed at least equivalent to that gained in a conventional U.S. program by a private organization specializing in the interpretation of foreign educational credentials. Physical Requirements: See VA Directive and Handbook 5019, Employee Occupational Health Service for requirements. English Language Proficiency: Health Technician (HIS) candidates must be proficient in spoken and written English in accordance with 38 U.S.C. § 7403(f). Grade Determinations: Health Technician (HIS), GS-06. (1) Experience. One year of experience equivalent to the next lower grade. Example of specialized experience include: performing non-diagnostic otoscopy including proper bracing techniques and making appropriate referrals for abnormalities and cerumen management; rechecking air-conduction pure tone threshold testing to assist the audiologist in modifying the treatment plan during hearing aid repair appointments; providing patient care in hearing aid repair appointments, consistent with the audiologist's treatment plan; completing visual and auditory checks with listening stethoscope of hearing aids prior to and following repair of device (troubleshoots performance); processing incoming devices from patients with concerns related to their hearing aids or hearing assistive technology; preparing and charging (if required) hearing aids and assistive devices for delivery; receiving devices and restoring settings of hearing aid/hearing assistive technology after repair or replacement from manufacturer. (2) Knowledge, Skills and Abilities. In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs: (a) Knowledge of normal and abnormal ear anatomy. (b) Knowledge of hearing aids, hearing assistive technology, hearing aid manufacturers and manufacturer software. (c) Skill in documenting patient procedures and patient devices. (d) Skill in providing patient education for hearing aid use, to include assisting patient with hearing aid insertion, removal and hygiene (cleaning and disinfection). (e) Ability to provide patient education and training regarding hearing loss and communication strategies for various listening situations. (f) Ability to solve problems or make decisions regarding hearing aids, hearing assistive technology and patient care that is consistent with the documented and co-signed plan of care under the supervision of an audiologist. (g) Ability to prepare patient, equipment, and/or environment for audiology procedures. (h) Ability to provide triage of patient telephone calls or audiology requests. References: VA Handbook 5005/149 Part II Appendix G73 Health Technician (Hearing Instrument Specialist) Qualification Standard GS-0640 Veterans Health Administration March 18, 2022. The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-06. Physical Requirements: Moderate lifting (15-44 pounds), moderate carrying (15-44 pounds), straight pulling, pulling hand over hand, pushing, reaching above shoulder, use of fingers, both hands required, walking, standing, repeated bending (2 hours) near vision correctable to 13" to 16" to Jaeger 1 to 4, far vision correctable in one eye to 20/20 and to 20/40 in the other, both eyes required, depth perception, ability to distinguish basic colors, ability to distinguish shades of colors and hearing (aid permitted). ["Direct patient care duties may include, but not limited to the following: Hearing aid troubleshooting and repair; performing visual and auditory checks of hearing aids and hearing assistive technology-including all hearing aid accessories as well as alerting devices (troubleshoots performance); fabricating earmold impressions with proper (non-diagnostic) otoscopy; ordering earmolds based on plan of care through prosthetics or DLC and fitting and modifying earmolds, if necessary; providing basic hearing aid information for patients and caregivers consistent with the audiologist's treatment plan, including, but not limited to, realistic expectations, communication strategies, and/or aural rehabilitation; assisting in set up and delivery of face-to-face and telehealth visits by preparing the equipment for patient evaluation and other audiology procedures including, but not limited to daily biologic listening calibration of audiometric equipment and calibration of real-ear equipment; assisting patients with hearing aid connectivity including, but not limited to, downloading applications (or apps), pairing devices in the app, Bluetooth pairing, and pairing hearing aid accessories. The incumbent is responsible for ensuring timely and accurate documentation of all interactions in the medical records and that all encounters are correctly documented using electronic medical record and computerized tracking and ordering functions via ROES. The Health Technician (HIS) completes documentation per medical center policy for timeliness for each episode of care and codes procedures as appropriate in the patient record in preparation for co-signature by the audiologist. Administrative duties may include, but not limited to the following: Maintaining comprehensive supply and equipment tracking systems to include monitoring stock of RME and consumable items; ensuring proper inventory levels to complete the daily tasks; prioritizing the acquisition of all supplies and equipment regarding date of expiration and may maintain a loaner hearing aid inventory. The Health Technician (HIS) assists patients through triaging phone calls and audiology requests with regards to priority and urgency, following the audiologist's plan of care. Work Schedule: Monday - Friday, various 8-hour tours between 7:00 am to 5:00 pm, based on the needs of the service. To be discussed during the interview. Telework: Not Available Virtual: This is not a virtual position. Functional Statement #: GS-0640-06 Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized. Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized Financial Disclosure Report: Not required"]
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.