IMPORTANT NOTICE: This position is open only to veterans due to Section 405 of Public Law 110-387, as codified in 38 U.S.C. 7402(b)(13). Veteran is defined as a person who served in the active military, naval, or air service, and who was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable. The incumbent will serve in an entry level capacity to attain the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to prepare for certification and to be able to perform the full range of assignments found at the full-performance level of the Peer Specialist position. During this entry level assignment, the full performance range and level of key functions will not be delegated to the incumbent. The Peer Support Apprentice functions as an interdisciplinary team member, assisting physicians and other professional/non-professional personnel in a rehabilitation treatment program. Peer specialists perform a variety of therapeutic and supportive tasks that include assisting Veterans in articulating their goals for recovery, learning and practicing new skills, helping them monitor their progress, assisting them in their treatment, modeling effective coping techniques and self-help strategies based on the peer specialist's own recovery experience, and supporting them in advocating for themselves to obtain effective services. The position assists Veterans in treatment, based on the principles of recovery, wellness, and resiliency, by promoting self-determination, personal responsibility, and the empowerment inherent in self-directed recovery. Duties include, but not limited to the following: Participates in the service, training, consultation, and other professional activities of VA health care services and functions as a fully vested member of the multidisciplinary team; Serves as a recovery agent by providing and advocating for effective wellness and holistic recovery-based services that aid Veterans in daily living; Assists Veterans to articulate personal recovery goals through the use of individual or group meetings; Observes behaviors that might indicate difficulty adapting or responding to treatment (e.g., missed assessment appointments, failure to attend or maintain abstinence, risk to self or others, disruptive behavior), completes appropriate documentation, and reports concerns to the treatment team in a timely manner; Uses ongoing individual and group meetings to teach Veterans how to identify and combat negative self-talk and overcome fears by providing a forum that allows Veteran to share their experiences; As necessary, handles crisis interventions for Veterans and addresses other emergent situations without the benefit of specific instructions Maintains a working knowledge of current trends and developments in holistic approaches in wellness and recovery by reading books, journals, and other relevant materials; Performs other related duties as assigned. NOTE: If selected (and not currently a Certified Peer Specialist), I understand, I must actively pursue becoming certified as required to serve as a Peer Specialist. I understand that if I fail to become certified by the prescribed date will result in removal from this GS-102 occupation and may result in termination of employment. At the time of the temporary appointment, the supervisor will provide the Peer Support Apprentice with the written requirements for becoming certified, the date by which he or she must become certified, and the consequences for not becoming certified by the deadline. Work Schedule: 8:00am-4:30pm, Monday-Friday Virtual: This is not a virtual position. Position Description/PD#: Mental Health Peer Support Apprentice/PD01059A Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: 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.