Ophthalmology Technicians in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) support Ophthalmologists in diagnosis, treatment, prevention, follow-up care and patient counseling. The 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. 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. English Language Proficiency: Must be proficient in written and spoken English. Experience and Education Experience. One year of experience in a health care field, such as but not limited to nursing, medical assistant, or health technician. OR 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 Experience/Education Combination. Equivalent combinations of experience and education are qualifying. Examples are listed below: Six months of experience in the health care field; and one year above high school; or 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 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). Creditable Experience Creditable Experience 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. 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. 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. GS-8 (Full Performance Level) Experience. One year of experience equivalent to the GS-7 grade level. Knowledge, skills, and abilities at the GS-07 grade level includes, but is not limited to: Knowledge of anatomy and function of the eye and basic ocular pharmacology. Knowledge of outpatient eye care policies and procedures in a health care environment. Ability to use basic ophthalmic diagnostic equipment to perform preliminary ocular testing. Ability to perform minor extraocular surgical assisting. Ability to provide eye care patient education. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSA). In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate all of the following KSAs: Ability to perform advanced tonometry and pupil evaluation; Ability to perform calculations for selection of intraocular lens; Knowledge of clinic based ophthalmic surgical assisting; Knowledge of eye anatomy and physiology; Knowledge of medication effects and proper instillation in the eye; Knowledge of optics; and Knowledge of proper cleaning and maintenance of clinic equipment. References: VA Handbook 5005/98 February 7, 2018 Part II, Appendix G52, Health Technician (Ophthalmology) Qualification Standard, Gs-0640 The full performance level of this vacancy is G-8. Physical Requirements: The work requires some physical exertion such as prolonged periods of standing, bending, reaching, crouching, stooping, stretching, and lifting moderately heavy items such as manuals, record boxes, equipment or assisting patients. The work requires above average agility and dexterity. ["Duties and responsibilities include, but not limited to: 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. Performs pachymetry to determine corneal thickness and manual keratometry or automated topography to determine corneal curvature. Performs intra-ocular lens calculations using an IOL Master or equivalent device. Performs automated visual field testing using various perimetry machines. Performs external photographs and fundus photography. Performs optical coherence tomography (OCT) of the anterior segment, retina and optic nerve. Performs patient screening and triage of potentially urgent ocular conditions. Assists during clinic-based ophthalmic surgery, including revision of wounds, biopsies of the eyelid lesions, cultures of conjunctiva, or cornea; reformation of anterior chamber, evacuation of hyphema, repositioning of corneal endothelial grafts, intra-vitreous injections, and laser surgical procedures. Educates patients and legal authorized representatives in eye care, including preoperative and postoperative instructions. Assists in the education and training of medical students, residents and fellows in those facilities with medical school affiliations. Ensures proper cleaning and disinfection; calibration, maintenance, backup, annual inventory and ordering of instruments, supplies and equipment; obtains quotes as needed; and reports needed repairs to biomedical engineering. Work Schedule: Fulltime, Monday through Friday, 8:30am to 5:00pm Telework: Not authorized Virtual: This is not a virtual position. Financial Disclosure Report: Not required"]
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.