Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration Blind Rehabilatation Specialist (VIST Coordinator) in Tallahassee, Florida

  • Duties




This job opportunity announcement (JOA) will be used to fill one (1) Blind Rehabilitation Specialist (VIST Coordinator), GS-0601-11/12 vacancy with the North Florida/South Georgia Veterans Health System located at the Sergeant Ernest I. "Boots" Thomas VA Clinic in Tallahassee, FL.

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The Blind Rehabilitation Specialist (Visual Impairment Service Team (VIST)) Coordinator functions independently in several settings including hospital, clinic, rehabilitation centers, long-term care facilities, educational institutions and home environments.

  • Developing a strong VIS Team program by providing effective leadership and high visibility at the VA facility.
  • Building/developing a strong VIS Team with membership consisting of Service Chiefs or designates who are in a position to implement policy.
  • Participating and developing quality assurance and quality improvement activities with oversight from the program office.
  • Developing written policies/procedures/documentation for VIST program to meet Joint Commission standards.
  • Completing written narrative reports and presenting same as requested for VA medical facility and national program office.
  • Developing educational materials, in a variety of media that can be utilized to help achieve VIST outreach goals and objectives.
  • Providing in-service educational training for VA and non-VA agencies and personnel.
  • Utilizing developed methodologies to identify Veterans who may be eligible for VIST program services, to include identifying blind Veterans from VA medical center encounters and diagnostic codes entered in electronic medical records.
  • Educating VA medical center staff on the functional implications of vision loss, blind rehabilitation matters and services.
  • Coordinate and overview of all of the Veteran's blind rehabilitation needs.
  • Determine the intensity of services based upon clinical judgement and the Veteran's goals.
  • Perform assessment to establish Veterans' needs as they relate to the continuum of vision treatment services.
  • Refer Veterans to the appropriate service component in the continuum of care for visually impaired Veterans.
  • Develop focus treatment plans containing goals to meet the Veterans' needs.
  • Collaborate closely with Blind Rehabilitation/clinical staff for coordination of care.
  • Complete required patient record documentation that is meaningful, accurate timely and concise.
  • Input referrals/required information in national Blind Rehabilitation database to avoid fragmented care.
  • Provide follow-up for rehabilitation services that the Veterans has received.

Work Schedule: Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Fi*nancial Disclosure Report:* Not required

Travel Required

Not required

Supervisory status


Promotion Potential


  • #### Job family (Series)

0601 General Health Science

  • Requirements


Conditions of Employment
  • You must be a U.S. Citizen to apply for this job
  • Designated and/or random drug testing may be required
  • Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959
  • You may be required to serve a probationary period
  • Subject to a background/security investigation
  • Must be proficient in written and spoken English
  • Selected applicants will be required to complete an online onboarding process

Basic Requirements: Citizenship:Citizen of the United States. (Non-citizens may be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Handbook 5005, Part II, Chapter 3, Section A, Paragraph 3g, this part.) Education: The individual must have earned: (a) A bachelor's degree [from an accredited college or university with a major field of study] in blind or vision rehabilitation, related program in rehabilitation, special education, family and consumer science education, technology and industrial arts education,] or health care; or, (b) A bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university (without a major field of study as outlined in (1)(a) above) that included or was supplemented by at least one of the following: At least 30 semester hours of directly related, upper level undergraduate courses (e.g., at least 200-course level or higher, or as identified by the college or university). One full year of directly related graduate level coursework (typically at least 15-18 semester hours). A certificate in the core curriculum in orientation and mobility, vision rehabilitation therapy or low vision therapy from an accredited college or university and a directly related practicum/internship in the occupation, either included in the degree or post-degree. Certification.Required at GS-11 and above. (1) Applicants must possess at least one active, current, full and unrestricted certification to be eligible for appointment. Certification must be granted by the Academy for Certification of Vision Rehabilitation & Education Professionals (ACVREP), or another equivalent, related professional credential in special education, rehabilitation or health care. If all certifications are impaired, the individual is ineligible for appointment in VA. NOTE:The ACVREP administers three certification programs: Low Vision Therapy, Orientation and Mobility, and Vision Rehabilitation Therapy. Once certification candidates are approved, they receive an official letter of acceptance, a certificate, and a logo pin. (2) BRSs who are VIST Coordinators may be drawn from traditional blind/vision rehabilitation backgrounds, and from counseling backgrounds such as social work, vocational rehabilitation counseling, etc. VIST Coordinators must be credentialed/certified through: (a) Any certification via the Academy for Certification of Vision Rehabilitation and Education (ACVREP), or (b) Individuals appointed based on being licensed as a Social Worker must be licensed or certified by a state to independently practice social work at the master's degree level. A doctoral degree in social work may not be substituted for the master's degree in social work. If appointed as a VIST Coordinator, Social Workers are appointed to the GS-601 series, but must still maintain a full, valid and unrestricted independent license or certification to remain qualified for employment, or (c) Certification via the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, CRC), or (d) Individuals appointed based on being licensed in another health care occupation must be licensed or certified by a state to independently practice in their field. If appointed as a VIST Coordinator, such individual will be appointed to the GS-601 series, but must still maintain their full, valid and unrestricted independent license or certification in their occupation to remain qualified for employment. Examples of occupations may include but not limited to Occupational Therapists and Psychologists. English Language Proficiency:BRSs must be proficient in spoken and written English as required by VA Handbook 5005, Part II, Chapter 3, Section A, Paragraph 3j.

Grade Determinations: Qualifications at the GS-11 level for VIST Coordinators.BRS who are VIST Coordinators may be drawn from traditional blind/vision rehabilitation backgrounds, and from counseling backgrounds such as social work, vocational rehabilitation counseling, etc. VIST Coordinators may be credentialed/certified through: a. Certification via the ACVREP, or b. Licensure via the Social Worker Licensure Board, or c. Certification via the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRC), or d. Equivalent, related, relevant professional credential in counseling or rehabilitation. Education and Experience.In addition to meeting the basic requirements, completion of 1 year of progressively complex experience equivalent to the next lower grade; or 3 years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to a Doctoral Degree; or Doctoral Degree in Blind Rehabilitation or a directly related field. In addition to meeting the KSAs described at the GS-9 level, the candidate must fully demonstrate the following professional KSAs: Demonstrated following Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities: 1. Knowledge and understanding of highly specialized complex evaluations and diagnostic tests and procedures of blind/vision rehabilitation. 2. Ability to properly assess a wide variety of patients having diverse and multiple disabilities to make recommendations for blind/vision rehabilitation therapeutic interventions. 3. Ability to write a blind/vision rehabilitation plan that includes evaluation information from multiple disciplines with observable, measurable goals and that identifies specific outcomes. 4. Knowledge of teaching methods and learning principles. 5. Ability to employ interventions, unusual motivational techniques and coordinate treatment with other professionals to achieve outcomes of the rehabilitation plan. 6. Ability to recommend appropriate blind/vision rehabilitation prosthetic devices for patients within scope of practice, making adaptations and modifications as required. 7. Ability to plan, direct, and distribute work assignments to volunteers, assistants and, interns and/or BRSs at lower grade levels and perform assigned mentoring duties for staff, students, and interns.

Qualifications at the GS-12 level for VIST Coordinators. Certification. Experience.In addition to meeting the basic requirements, completion of a minimum of 1 year of progressively complex experience equivalent to the next lower grade level. In addition to meeting the KSAs described at the GS-11 level, the candidate must fully demonstrate the KSAs required for the specific assignment. Demonstrated following Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities: 1. Ability to independently develop, plan, and administer complex treatment programs. 2. Ability to act as a subject matter expert in the blind/vision rehabilitation field and as consultant, supervisor and/or mentor in evaluating and treating patients in specialty or program areas. 3. Ability to coordinate, motivate, and effectively manage staff and/or committee members to include organizing work, setting priorities, and delegating tasks and responsibilities. 4. Ability to disseminate appropriate information through various media as a consultant or mentor. 5. Skill in interpersonal relationships in dealing with patients, employees, other team leaders, managers and other stakeholders. 6. Ability to identify team group dynamics, objectively observe, and modify behaviors. 7. Ability to apply decision-making principles to adjust programs on a day-to-day basis, to develop short term and long-range goals, and to plan for future utilization of resources.

References: VA Handbook 5005/48

The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-12. The actual grade at which an applicant may be selected for this vacancy is in the range of GS-11 to GS-12.

Physical Requirements:Able to meet the physical demands of the position, reasonable accommodations may be made to enable qualified individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. they must have good manual dexterity. Must be able to express or exchange ideas by means of spoken and written word. Must be able to view and read information on computer screens.


IMPORTANT:A transcript must be submitted with your application if you are basing all or part of your qualifications on education.

Note:Only education or degrees recognized by the U.S. Department of Education from accredited colleges, universities, schools, or institutions may be used to qualify for Federal employment. You can verify your education here: If you are using foreign education to meet qualification requirements, you must send a Certificate of Foreign Equivalency with your transcript in order to receive credit for that education. For further information, visit:

Additional information

This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies.

It is the policy of the VA to not deny employment to those that have faced financial hardships or periods of unemployment.

This position is in the Excepted Service and does not confer competitive status.

VA encourages persons with disabilities to apply. The health related positions in VA are covered by Title 38, and are not covered by the Schedule A excepted appointment authority.

Veterans and Transitioning Service Members: Please visit the VA for Vets site for career-search tools for Veterans seeking employment at VA, career development services for our existing Veterans, and coaching and reintegration support for military service members.

If you are unable to apply online view the following link for information regarding an Alternate Application.

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How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE.Your application, résumé, C.V., and/or supporting documentation will be verified. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect consideration for employment.

NOTE: The Professional Standards Board (a peer-review group) will review the selected candidate's education and experience and recommend the grade and salary at which the candidate will be placed. For internal selectees eligible for promotion, the board will determine grade and HR will determine step in accordance with policy.

Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religions; spiritual; community; student; social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.

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Background checks and security clearance
Security clearance


Drug test required


  • Required Documents


Required Documents

To apply for this position, you must provide a complete Application Package which includes:

ALTHOUGH NOT REQUIRED IT IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED THAT APPLICANTS USE THE USAJOBS.GOV RESUME BUILDER. (REQUIRED) Resume or CV- Your resume must have the following information for each position you have held: job title, duties, dates of employment including month and year start/end dates, and full-time or part-time status with the number of hours worked each week. IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE.If your resume does not support your questionnaire answers, we will not allow credit for your response(s). (REQUIRED) Copy of SF-50 Notice of Personnel Action- Please submit your most current SF-50. It must show your job title, series, current grade and step and appointment type to verify status. DO NOT SUBMIT AWARD 50's. Note:Time-In-Grade requirements also apply to former Federal employees applying for reinstatement as well as current employees applying for Veterans Employment Opportunities Act of 1998 (VEOA) appointment. (REQUIRED) Copy of transcripts- is required with conferred degree stated. Unofficial copy is acceptable for application purposes, however official copy will be confirmed prior to appointment. (REQUIRED) VA Form 10-2850c - Application for Associated Health Occupations (Available at 10-2850c. This*form* must be completed, and pages 3 and 4 must be signed and dated to be considered complete. (REQUIRED) Licensure, Certification and/or Registration- A copy of licensure/certification/registration with expiration date related to the requirements of the position. Failure to submit could result in a your disqualification and not being considered for the position

The following documents are accepted, and may be required if applicable to your eligibility and/or qualifications for this position. Please use this checklist to ensure you have included all documents required for your application.

  • Cover Letter
  • OF-306
  • Certifications, additional training Documents, etc.
  • Resume
  • SF-50
  • Transcript
If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

  • Benefits



A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. Learn more about federal benefits.

Review our benefits

Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time, or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.

  • How to Apply


How to Apply

All applicants are encouraged to apply online. To apply for this position, you must complete the full questionnaire and submit the documentation specified in the Required Documents section below. The complete application package must be submitted by 11:59 PM (ET) on 02/27/2019 to receive consideration. To preview the questionnaire click

  1. To begin, click Apply Online to create a USAJOBS account or log in to your existing account. Follow the prompts to select your USA JOBS resume and/or other supporting documents and complete the occupational questionnaire.
  2. Click Submit My Answers to submit your application package.

NOTE: It is your responsibility to ensure your responses and appropriate documentation is submitted prior to the closing date.

To verify your application is complete, log into your USA JOBS account,, select the Application Status link and then select the more information link for this position. The Details page will display the status of your application, the documentation received and processed, and any correspondence the agency has sent related to this application. Your uploaded documents may take several hours to clear the virus scan process. To return to an incomplete application, log into your USA JOBS account and click Update Application in the vacancy announcement. You must re-select your resume and/or other documents from your USA JOBS account or your application will be incomplete.

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Agency contact information
HRMS Front Desk





Malcom Randall Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center 1601 Southwest Archer Road Gainesville, FL 32608 US

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Next steps

Once your online application is submitted you will receive a confirmation notification by email. After we receive application packages (including all required documents) and the vacancy announcement closes, we will review applications to ensure qualification and eligibility requirements are met. After the review is complete, a referral certificate(s) is issued and applicants will be notified of their status by email. Referred applicants will be notified as such and may be contacted directly by the hiring office for an interview. All referred applicants receive a final notification once a selection decision has been made.

You may check the status of your application at any time by logging into your USA Jobs account and clicking on Applications. Information regarding your application status can be found in the USAJobs Help Center.

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  • Fair & Transparent
Fair & Transparent

The Federal hiring process is setup to be fair and transparent. Please read the following guidance.

Equal Employment Opportunity Policy

The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.

  • Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) for federal employees & job applicants

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Reasonable Accommodation Policy

Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application process should follow the instructions in the job opportunity announcement. For any part of the remaining hiring process, applicants should contact the hiring agency directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

A reasonable accommodation is any change to a job, the work environment, or the way things are usually done that enables an individual with a disability to apply for a job, perform job duties or receive equal access to job benefits.

Under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodations when:

  • An applicant with a disability needs an accommodation to have an equal opportunity to apply for a job.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to perform the essential job duties or to gain access to the workplace.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to receive equal access to benefits, such as details, training, and office-sponsored events.

You can request a reasonable accommodation at any time during the application or hiring process or while on the job. Requests are considered on a case-by-case basis.

Learn more about disability employment and reasonable accommodations or how to contact an agency.

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Legal and regulatory guidance
  • Financial suitability
  • Social security number request
  • Privacy Act
  • Signature and false statements
  • Selective Service
  • New employee probationary period

This job originated on For the full announcement and to apply, visit Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at will be considered.

Open & closing dates: 02/06/2019 to 02/27/2019

Service: Excepted

Pay scale & grade: GS 11 - 12

Salary: $61,218 to $95,388 per year

Appointment type: Permanent

Work schedule: Full-Time