Open & closing dates
Opening and closing dates
07/07/2021 to 09/30/2021
This job will close when we have received 200 applications which may be sooner than the closing date. Learn more
Pay scale & grade
$32,445 to $52,976 per year
Full-time - Tour of Duty to be discussed with supervisor. May vary to include evening hours and weekend hours.
Many vacancies in the following locations:
East Orange, NJ
New York, NY
This job is open to
U.S. citizens, nationals or those who owe allegiance to the U.S.
Clarification from the agency
This is an open continuous announcement for Public applicants and may be extended or closed as needed. If you are a current, permanent internal VHA applicant, you are encouraged to apply through announcement CBTE-11165972-21-ENB. Qualified applicants will be considered and referred as vacancies become available.
Learn more about this agency
This announcement will be used to fill vacancies at the New York Harbor (New York, Brooklyn and Queens), Bronx, New Jersey (East Orange and Lyons), and Northport locations.
The Medical Support Assistant (MSA) performs a wide variety of administrative and clerical duties as a member of the health care team. The MSA utilizes multiple computer applications, as well as the integrated electronic medical record system. The MSA will obtain or will have knowledge of medical terminology and administrative and department procedures for the management of records and forms, information security and exchange, management of reports and data, scheduling of patient appointments, telephone care, and public relations/customer service. Analytical ability, judgment, discretion, and dedication to customer service are required on a daily basis to carry out the functions of this position.
Financial Disclosure Report: Not required
Assignment. This is an entry level MSA position. It is expected that MSAs [at this level] receive guidance from more experienced staff members and require frequent and direct supervision. [At this level, MSAs apply general rules and policies relating to clinic functions, staff, and automated data processing methods in support of treatment to patients. They utilize a variety of patient data systems in scheduling patients for treatment and annotates patient records. They perform front desk duties, receives telephone call, and visitors to the MSA unit. They make and cancel appointments, review patient records for necessary information, and review patient demographics and insurance verification. They consult with clinic staff when processing physician scheduling and administrative orders.]
Assignment. This is a developmental level MSA position. It is expected that MSAs [at this level] receive [minor and less frequent] guidance from higher experienced staff members for more difficult tasks [ ]. Assignments at this level include, but are not limited to: [scheduling and rescheduling patients for treatment; interviewing patients for appointments; referring patients to other medical specialty clinics; providing information to patients necessary to resolve VA Handbook complaints;] interacting with both internal and external customers; [reviewing] and [documenting] medical outpatient and inpatient [electronic health records], as well as administrative records; verifying third party insurance and updating information in the Insurance Capture Buffer (ICB) system; obtaining medical information from patients; coordinating information and actions related to patient care and services; and scheduling appointments in accordance with VHA national scheduling guidelines. [ ] [MSAs at this level refer] all questions [regarding] medical attention to [the] appropriate health care team member.
Assignment. This is the full performance level for MSAs. At this level, the MSA independently performs a full range of duties [related to the delivery of healthcare services in an inpatient or outpatient setting. Advises clinical staff on current administrative processes.] The MSA is responsible for [answering phones, greeting patients, relaying messages to appropriate staff inside or outside of the unit], scheduling appointments, including interpreting and verifying provider orders in accordance with VHA national scheduling guidelines. Assignments at this level include, but are not limited to: scheduling, canceling, re-scheduling [patient] appointments and/or consults; entering no-show information; monitoring [appointment requests from multiple] electronic [sources; participating in huddles with other MSAs and/or clinic staff to determine the daily needs of the clinic], monitoring both inpatient and outpatient appointments [in] areas of responsibility; [ ] verifying and updating demographics and insurance information when [patients check-in for appointments. Coordinates administrative functions relating to] emergency and non-emergency transfers to other VA facilities or private hospitals [and determines appointment type based on the patient's] eligibility [status] (i.e., TRICARE, sharing agreements, [collaterals, research patient, VA employee], etc.)
Assignments at the full performance level (GS 05) include but are not limited to:
- Manage written and faxed correspondence, and paper medical records within teamlet / team and coordinate release of information in accordance with policy
- Verify and update demographics
- Manage health insurance information, verifying third party insurance and updating information in the Insurance Capture Buffer (ICB) system
- Coordinate information and actions related to patient care and ancillary services, manage scheduling package, and schedule appointments with Providers as recommended by Providers, PC clinical team members and integrated interdisciplinary team members in accordance with VHA national scheduling guidelines, TMS training, Primary Care instruction and business rules
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
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.
- 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 3.g.).
- Experience and Education.
- (1) Experience. Six months experience of clerical, office, [customer service], or other [administrative] work that indicates the ability to acquire the particular knowledge and skills needed to perform the duties of the position; OR,
- (2) Education. One year above high school; OR,
- (3) Experience/Education Combination. Equivalent combination of experience and education are qualifying for entry level for which both education and experience are acceptable.
- Certification. None required.
- Foreign Education. To be creditable, education completed outside the U.S. must have been submitted to a private organization that specializes in the interpretation of foreign educational credentials and such education must have been deemed at least equivalent to that gained in conventional U.S. programs.
- Physical Requirements. See VA Directive and Handbook 5019.
- English Language Proficiency. MSAs must be proficient in spoken and written English in accordance with VA Handbook 5005, Part II, Chapter 3, Section A, paragraph 3.j.
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).
(1) Knowledge of [ ] MSA Practices. To be creditable, the experience must have demonstrated the knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) associated with current MSA responsibilities [or an equivalent administrative patient support role in a non-VA medical inpatient or outpatient setting]. Experience satisfying this requirement may be paid/non-paid employment as [an] MSA or [an equivalent position in a non-VA hospital or clinic setting].
(2) Quality of Experience. Qualifying experience must be at a level comparable to MSA experience [or equivalent administrative clinical support role in a non-VA medical inpatient or outpatient setting] at the next lower grade level. For all assignments above the full performance level, the higher-level duties must consist of significant scope, administrative independence, complexity (difficulty), and a range of [varieties] as described in this standard, at the specified grade level and be performed by the incumbent at least 25% of the time.
(3) Part-Time Experience. Part-time experience as [an MSA or equivalent administrative patient support in] a [non-VA medical inpatient or outpatient setting] is creditable according to its relationship to the full-time workweek. For example, [an] MSA employed 20 hours a week, or on a 1/2-time basis, would receive [one] full-time workweek of credit for each [two] weeks of service.
Grade Determinations: In addition to the basic requirements for employment, the following [education and experience] criteria must be met when determining the grade of candidates:
Medical Support Assistant, GS-3
Experience or Education. None beyond the basic requirements.
Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. Candidates must demonstrate all of] the KSAs below:
- Ability to meet, communicate, and interact with individuals in a courteous and helpful manner in order to give instructions and arrange appointments.
- Ability to utilize computer systems to enter administrative data in patient systems.
- Ability to learn and utilize basic medical terminology to record patient messages and physician requests pertaining to follow-up medical care.
Medical Support Assistant, GS-4
Experience. One year of experience in clerical, office, [customer service, or other administrative] work that indicates the ability to acquire the particular knowledge and skills needed to perform the duties of the position;
Education. Two years of education above high school.
Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. Candidates must demonstrate [all of] the KSAs below:
- Ability to meet, communicate, and interact with individuals from varying backgrounds and other health care team members in a courteous and helpful manner in order to [facilitate medical care for patients].
- Ability to use, [and navigate between], various types of office automation equipment and software [(i.e. computer systems, web based scheduling programs; insurance collection system; scanning software, multiple line phone systems; electronic faxing programs) to support patient care].
- Knowledge of basic medical terminology to assist in the provision of care to patients.
- Skill in recording patient messages and understanding physician requests pertaining to follow-up medical care in internal or external clinics.
Medical Support Assistant, GS-5
Experience. One year of experience equivalent to the [GS-4] grade level;
Education. Four years of education above high school.
Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. Candidates must demonstrate [all of] the KSAs below:
- Ability to operate computerized programs and [systems] in order to enter, modify, and retrieve sensitive [medical and patient identifying] information [(PII)] into or from electronic [health] records, scheduling systems, and/or reports.
- Advanced knowledge of medical terminology specific to understand medical diagnosis and procedures sufficient to communicate clinical staff instructions to patients.
- Ability to [schedule medical] appointments in a clinical setting.
- Ability to work independently in the accomplishment of a wide variety of duties [performing patient support work].
- Ability to communicate effectively and professionally [in person, electronically, and/or by telephone], with [internal and external customers].
- Skill in customer service with the ability to identify [customer] concerns, [and refer] to the [appropriate staff], as necessary, to ensure a satisfactory resolution.
References: VA Handbook 5005/117; Part II; Appendix G45.
The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-05. The actual grade at which an applicant may be selected for this vacancy is in the range of GS-03 to GS-05.
Physical Requirements: See VA Directive and Handbook 5019.
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: http://ope.ed.gov/accreditation/. 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: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ous/international/usnei/us/edlite-visitus-forrecog.html.
Receiving Service Credit or Earning Annual (Vacation) Leave: Federal Employees earn annual leave at a rate (4, 6 or 8 hours per pay period) which is based on the number of years they have served as a Federal employee. VA may offer newly-appointed Federal employee's credit for their job-related non-federal experience or active duty uniformed military service. This credited service can be used in determining the rate at which they earn annual leave. Such credit must be requested and approved prior to the appointment date and is not guaranteed.
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.
How You Will Be Evaluated
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.
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.
Background checks and security clearance
To apply for this position, you must provide a complete Application Package which includes:
VA Form 10-2850c Application for Associated Health Occupations can be found at: https://www.va.gov/vaforms/medical/pdf/vha-10-2850c-fill.pdf
. (Required if selected).
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, such as a copy of your transcript (if using education to qualify), SF-50's (current/former Federal employees), etc.
- Cover Letter
- DD-214/ Statement of Service
- Disability Letter (VA)
- VA form 10-2850c- Application for associated health occupations dated within a year of application
- Other (2)
Veterans' Preference: When applying for Federal Jobs, eligible Veterans should claim preference for 5pt (TP), 10pt (CP/CPS/XP), or for Sole Survivor Preference (SSP) in the questionnaire. You must provide a legible copy of your DD214(s) which shows dates and character of service (honorable, general, etc.). If you are currently serving on active duty and expect to be released or discharged within 120 days you must submit documentation related to your active duty service which reflects the dates of service, character of service (honorable, general, etc.), and dates of impending separation. Additionally, disabled veterans and others eligible for 10-point preference (such as widows or mothers of eligible Veterans) must also submit an SF-15 "Application for 10 Point Veteran Preference" with required proof as stated on the form. Documentation is required to award preference. For more information on Veterans' Preference, please visit Feds Hire Vets - Veterans - Job Seekers - Veterans' Preference
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.
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.
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 09/30/2021 to receive consideration. To preview the questionnaire click https://apply.usastaffing.gov/ViewQuestionnaire/11165973.
- 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.
- 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, https://my.usajobs.gov/Account/Login
, 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.
NOTE: Participation in the seasonal influenza program is a condition of employment and a requirement for all Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care Personnel (HCP). It is a requirement that all HCP to receive annual seasonal influenza vaccination or obtain an exemption for medical or religious reasons. Wearing a face mask is required when an exemption to the influenza vaccination has been granted. HCP in violation of this directive may face disciplinary action up to and including removal from federal service.
HCP are individuals who, during the influenza season, work in VHA locations or who come into contact with VA patients or other HCP as part of their duties. VHA locations include, but are not limited to, VA hospitals and associated clinics, community living centers (CLCs), community-based outpatient clinics (CBOCs), domiciliary units, Vet centers and VA-leased medical facilities. HCP include all VA licensed and unlicensed, clinical and administrative, remote and onsite, paid and without compensation, full- and part-time employees, intermittent employees, fee basis employees, VA contractors, researchers, volunteers and health professions trainees (HPTs) who are expected to perform any or all of their work at these facilities. HPTs may be paid or unpaid and include residents, interns, fellows and students. HCP also includes VHA personnel providing home-based care to Veterans and drivers and other personnel whose duties put them in contact with patients outside VA medical facilities.
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.
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.
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.
Legal and regulatory guidance