The position is located in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Veterans Health Administration (VHA), VISN 1 Providence, Rhode Island under the Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Service. The purpose of this position is to independently oversee and maintain all aspects of the Pathology section of the Laboratory. This position serves as the technical expert and advisor to laboratory and professional medical staff in the specialty of histopathology. 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: (1) Experience. One year of experience in a health care field that demonstrates the applicant's ability to perform the work or provides an understanding of the work such as but not limited to a medical or clinical laboratory assistant (or technician) or health technician. OR, (2) Education (a) Four academic years above high school leading to a bachelor's degree with courses related to the occupation such as biological science or chemistry; or (b) Successful completion of two academic years of study above high school that included at least 24 semester hours in Chemistry and/or in appropriate fields of biological science and successful completion of a 12-month program of education and training in histopathology or cytotechnology. OR, (3) Experience/Education Combination. Equivalent combination of experience and education are qualifying for entry level for which both education and experience are acceptable. Examples are listed below: (a) Six months of experience in the health care field and two years of education above high school that included at least six semester hours in health care related courses such as biological science, surgical technician courses or other courses related to the position; or an associate's degree in a health care related field. (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 histopathology technicians given by the U.S. Armed Forces. 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 GS-07: One year of experience equivalent to the next lower grade level (GS-06). In addition to the one year experience, the candidate must demonstrate all of the following KSAs. Skill in applying professional, complex anatomic pathology principles, practices, concepts, and theories in performing new or difficult specialized testing methods or techniques. Ability to provide technical oversight of laboratory quality control and assurance procedures and principles of performance improvement exhibiting competence in managing reagent and supply inventories and document control systems. Ability to validate methodologies, operate anatomic pathology laboratory equipment and perform complex instrument troubleshooting. Ability to use independent technical judgment to analyze and evaluate laboratory results and resolve problems. References: VA HANDBOOK 5005/102 PART II APPENDIX G55 Physical Requirements: The work involves regular and recurring risks and discomforts associated with working in a clinic. This work requires physical exertion that consists of mainly long periods of standing and some bending and lifting as required for the handling of supplies and equipment. In addition, manual skills are required to be able to perform delicate procedures. ["This position serves as the technical expert and advisor to laboratory and professional medical staff in the specialty of histopathology. Independently performs both routine and complex histological procedures. Duties include but not limited to: Receives all requests and specimens for testing into the histopathology laboratory. Verifies the accuracy and completeness of the request and proper sample collection, labeling and transport requirements. Makes sure two full patient identifiers are on each sample. Evaluates, accepts or rejects specimens, using proficiency in recognizing tissues and identifies unusual conditions and discrepancies which may cause erroneous results or require special handling. Makes sound decisions independently and takes appropriate action to correct and solve problems. Interacts with supervisor and hospital personnel to correct discrepancies. Accessions and labels specimens using two full patient identifiers. Prepares specimen(s) and tissue examination form for gross examination by the pathologist in the computer. Using principles of histotechnology, processes surgical, cytology and autopsy tissue specimens which are often delicate and difficult to handle through the required, complex steps of fixation, dehydration, clearing, infiltration, embedding, microtomy, staining and cover slipping. Recognizes improperly processed tissue and under decalcified tissue and is able to take corrective action. Stains routine slides using computerized stainer with hematoxylin and eosin for studying nuclear and cytoplasmic details of tissues. Checks for proper differentiation, dehydration and clearing. Control tissue is evaluated, and results documented. Problems are corrected. Prepares cytological specimens for transportation to testing site. Specimens include but are not limited to fine needle aspiration biopsies for immediate diagnosis from the clinics, respiratory samples, urine, cerebrospinal fluid, body fluids, among others. Responsible for knowing appropriate fixation techniques for any special studies that may be appropriate. Operates equipment such as microscopes, microtomes, tissue processor, cryostat, embedding center and strainers. Calibrates, performs preventive maintenance and records required function checks. Adheres to established safety, infection control and universal precautions and guidelines as described. in the Laboratory Safety and Chemical Hygiene Manual, VAMC Emergency Plan and VAMC Safety Manual. Maintains a safe, clean and professional work area. Maintains qualifications necessary to perform duties by reading journals, participating in continuing education, i.e. in-services, professional meetings and workshops. Participates in College of American Pathologists biopsy series proficiency testing. Assists in training personnel or students in laboratory safety and laboratory procedures with Histology laboratory documents accordingly. Monitors specimens, reagents, equipment and the environment for contamination and outdates. Assists Pathologists with autopsy procedures, including appropriate patient identification. The incumbent prepares patient remains for opening the cavity, brain removal, organ measuring and weighing, cleaning and sewing up cavity upon completion. Is responsible for cleaning the patient remains after the completion of the procedure and preparing the body for removal. Properly stores and/or disposes of patient specimens removed during autopsy procedures. Responsible for decontamination of morgue after autopsy procedures are complete. Adheres to establishes safety guidelines necessary during an autopsy procedure and is fully trained on using proper Personal Protective Equipment at all times. Work Schedule: Full time; Monday-Friday; 8:00a.m-4:30p.m Compressed/Flexible: Not Authorized Telework: Not Authorized Virtual: This is not a virtual position Functional Statement #: F01290 Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized Financial Disclosure Report: Not required Notifications: This position is in the Excepted Service. Current and former Federal employees must submit copies of their most recent SF-50, (Notice of Personnel Action). The SF-50 must identify the position title, series, grade, step, tenure and type of service (Competitive or Excepted). In some cases, more than one SF-50 may be required to show a higher grade previously held. This position is a LIUNA Bargaining Unit position. Narrative responses to the knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) may be required from the selectee in order to proceed with the appointment."]
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.