Ophthalmology Technicians support Ophthalmologists in diagnosis, treatment, prevention, follow-up care and patient counseling. The Full Performance Health Technician (Ophthalmology) performs a range of standard, but complex, diagnostic procedures, assists during clinic-based surgical procedures, educates patients and legal representatives, assists with the education of medical students and residents, and may perform many "direct patient care services" under the supervision of Ophthalmologists. Applicants pending the completion of educational or certification/licensure requirements may be referred and tentatively selected but may not be hired at the full performance 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. (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). Exception. Non-certified applicants who otherwise meet the minimum qualification requirements may be appointed as a graduate Health Technician (Ophthalmology) under the authority of 38 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 within two years of initial appointment will result in removal from the Health Technician (Ophthalmology), GS-0640 series and 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: Health Technician (Ophthalmology), GS-6 (Developmental Level 1) Specialized Experience: at least one year of experience equivalent to the GS-5 grade level; entry level position and are trainee in nature. Performing limited routine assignments under daily direct supervision. Deviations from unanticipated problems and unfamiliar situations are referred to the supervisor for a decision or help. Obtains and records vital signs including blood pressure, pulse, and glucose levels. In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate, in their resume, all of the following Knowledge, Skills & Abilities (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; and 4. Knowledge of basic disinfection of non-critical reusable medical equipment. Health Technician (Ophthalmology), GS-7 (Developmental Level 2) Specialized Experience: at least one year of experience equivalent to the GS-6 grade level; operating and monitoring commonly used equipment performing basic screening procedures. Assists ophthalmology staff by obtaining an accurate medical and ophthalmic history, measuring and recording visual acuity, administering anesthetic eye drops, performing basic tonometry, estimating the anterior chamber depth and recording a simple spectacle reading through automated lensometry. In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate, in their resume, 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; and 5. Ability to provide eye care patient education. Health Technician (Ophthalmology), GS-8 (Full Performance Level) Specialized Experience: at least one year of experience equivalent to the GS-7 grade level; performing 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 visual field testing (using Amsler grid or automated equipment) Certification. Must be certified as a Certified Ophthalmic Assistant (COA) with the Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology (JCAHPO). In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate, in their resume, 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; and 7. Knowledge of proper cleaning and maintenance of clinic equipment. Preferred Experience: Ophthalmology References: VA HANDBOOK 5005/98 PART II APPENDIX G52 The full performance level of this vacancy is GS 8. The actual grade at which an applicant may be selected for this vacancy is in the range of GS 5 to GS 8. Promotion Potential: The selectee may be promoted to the full performance level without further competition when all regulatory, qualification, and performance requirements are met. Selection at a lower grade level does not guarantee promotion to the full performance level. Physical Requirements: Individual is required to move from one examination room to another many times during the clinic day. This may require some periods of walking, sitting and standing in changing duration. He/she is required to lift moderate weight in the movement of medical charts and clinic supplies. Also, he/she must maneuver wheelchairs and litters when taking patients to other areas of the clinic. Also, must lift and position patients for test and procedures with assistance or use a mechanical lift. Both hands required, use of fingers. He/she require both eyes, near vision correctable to Jaeger 1 to 4, distance ["Duties of the Health Technician (Ophthalmology) are to include, but not limited to: Performs the following tests: visual acuity, applanation tonometry, auto refraction, color vision testing, stereopsis and POC glucose testing; Obtains information regarding indications or contraindications and dilate the eye using appropriate drops. Also instruct patients in the proper use of eye drops. Cleans all clinical equipment between uses by patients. Performs minor maintenance on the multiple specialized optical equipment including ophthalmoscopes, slit lamps, phoropters, and lensometer. This includes changing bulbs and batteries and lens cleaning. Ability to use basic ophthalmic equipment; Obtains an accurate medical and ophthalmic history. Measures and records visual acuity. Administers anesthetic eye drops; Performing basic tonometry; Estimates the anterior chamber depth Records a simple spectacle reading through automated lensometry. Ability to use basic ophthalmic diagnostic equipment to perform preliminary ocular testing. Ability to perform minor extraocular surgical assisting; and Ability to provide eye care patient education. 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 per SOP, perform basic color screening, basic visual field testing (using Amsler grid or automated equipment), basic imaging testing such as corneal topography; external photography, 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. Assists the ophthalmologist during minor ophthalmic surgical procedures and is adept at applying sterile technique and infection control procedures. Perform autorefractor to determine spectacle prescription. Cleans and readies used surgical instruments for return to SPD for processing. Maintains stock of instruments at levels required to deliver patient care. Order new instruments and supplies to meet clinic demands as needed. 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. Incumbent is responsible for the proper use, storage, cleaning and disposal of Reusable Medical Equipment (RME). RME is any medical equipment designed by the manufacturer to be reused for multiple patients. Incumbent is responsible for knowing what reusable instruments, equipment, medical devices or supplies are in use in their clinical area. Incumbent is required to obtain, read, and follow Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) or established guidelines for all RME in use in their clinical area prior to use. Responsible for following all local SOPs or guidelines for set up, use and reprocessing all RME. Incumbent will consult SPD and the Infection Control Officer (ICO) for clarification of SOPs or guidelines in the clinical areas that address the reprocessing of RME in the clinical area Work Schedule: Monday-Friday, 8:00am-4:30pm Compressed/Flexible: Not Available Telework: Not Available Virtual: This is not a virtual position. Functional Statement #: 91261-A Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized Financial Disclosure Report: Not required Travel: you may be expected to travel for this position; must possess a valid drivers license and be able to operate a government owned vehicle."]
About Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration
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.