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This Position Is No Longer Available

Job Title:  Medical Support Assistant
Department:  Department Of Veterans Affairs
Agency:  Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration
Job Announcement Number:  VHA-664-13-MYM-910568

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.
$27,123.00 to $44,282.00 / Per Year
Monday, June 17, 2013 to Thursday, June 27, 2013
Full Time - Permanent
1 vacancy in the following location:
San Diego County, CA United StatesView Map
All United States Citizens Who Live Within the Local Commuting Area (50 Miles) of the San Diego, CA Metro Area


Vacancy Identification Number (VIN) 910568

OUR MISSION: To fulfill President Lincoln's promise – "To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan" – by serving and honoring the men and women who are America's Veterans.  


As a VA professional, your opportunities are endless. With many openings in the multiple functions of VA, you will have a wide range of opportunities and leadership positions at your fingertips. Not only is it the largest, most technologically advanced integrated health care system in the Nation, but we also provide many other services to Veterans through the Benefits Administration and National Cemeteries. VA professionals feel good about their careers and their ability to balance work and home life. VA offers generous paid time off and a variety of predictable and flexible scheduling opportunities.  For more information on the Department of Veterans Affairs, go to

Note:  The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-5.  The actual grade at which an applicant may be selected for this vacancy is in the range of GS-3, GS-4, or GS-5.  The Professional Standards Board (a peer-review group) will review the selected candidate’s education and experience and recommend the grade and step at which the candidate will be placed.  The salary is based on the grade and step approved for the selected candidate.

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.




  • Must be a U.S. Citizen.
  • Must be proficient in written and spoken English
  • ALL documents listed in the "Required Documents" section.
  • Background and-or Security Investigation required
  • Must be within the local commuting area.


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Then incumbent of this position serves as a Medical Support Assistant at the San Diego VA Healthcare System, San Diego, CA. The incumbent will be communicating with people from various backgrounds and must be able to use professional courtesy and tactfulness when processing the telephone calls and requests for scheduling.

This position provides patients with administrative help or access to health care advice by means of the telephone and/or direct personal communication.  The incumbent uses advanced interpersonal skills in order to effectively understand patients needs, assess possible courses of action and take appropriate measures to ensure patient satisfaction. The incumbent makes decisions to ensure that the veteran is referred to the correct health care professional or team within an appropriate timeframe for meeting patient clinical and customer service needs.  These decisions are critical and affect the overall functioning of the program as well as the health and well being of the patient.  The decisions are based on the information obtained from the veteran, knowledge of the overall functions of the program and the ability to problem solving.  


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To qualify for this position, applicants must meet all requirements by the closing date of this announcement Thursday, June 27, 2013.


The Optional Application for Federal Employment (OF-612) is now obsolete per The Office of Personnel Management.  In order to be considered for this position you must provide a resume. It is recommended to include all the information contained in the OF-612 in your resume.  In order to qualify for this position, your resume must provide sufficient experience and/or education, knowledge, skills, and abilities, to perform the duties of the specific position for which you are being considered.   Your resume is the key means we have for evaluating your skills, knowledge, and abilities, as they relate to this position. Therefore, we encourage you to submit a thorough resume that directly relates to this position.  Your resume MUST include the following: the month and year for each position held, and the number of work hours per week, e.g., 03/09 - 06/11 (or Present), 40 hrs/week.


1. Citizenship: Citizen of the United States.

2. Experience and/or Education:

  • Experience: Six months experience of clerical, office or other work that indicates the ability to acquire the particular knowledge and skills needed to perform the duties of the position; OR


  • Education: One year above high school (copy of official/unofficial transcripts required); OR


  • Experience/Education combination: Equivalent combination of experience and education are qualifying for entry level for which both education and experience are acceptable.

    3. English Language Proficiency: Must be proficient in spoken and written English.


GRADE DETERMINATIONS:  (Applicant's education and experience will be reviewed by a Professional Standards Board in determining the grade and salary of the applicant selected. The recommended salary may be at any point in the range listed for this vacancy, GS-3 to GS-5.)


GS-3 (Entry Level):

a. Experience or Education: None beyond the basic requirements.

b. Assignment. This is an entry level MSA position. It is expected that MSAs receive guidance from more experienced staff members and require frequent and direct supervision.


GS-4 (Developmental Level):

a. Experience or Education: One year of experience in clerical, office or other work that indicates the ability to acquire the particular knowledge and skills needed to perform the duties of the position, as outlined below, OR two years of education above high school (copy of official/unofficial transcripts required).

b. Assignment. This is a developmental level MSA position. It is expected that MSAs receive guidance from more experienced staff members for more difficult tasks and require frequent and direct contact from the assigned lead and/or supervisor. Assignments at this level include but are not limited to: interacting with both internal and external customers; establishing and maintaining medical outpatient and inpatient charts 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. The MSA refers all questions requiring immediate medical attention to appropriate health care team member.

c. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities. Candidates must demonstrate the KSAs below in their resume.  Narrative responses are NOT needed, the selectee will be required to provide a narrative response.

1. Ability to meet, communicate and interact with individuals with varying backgrounds and other health care team members in a courteous and helpful manner in order to complete job assignments.

2. Ability to use various types of office automation equipment and software.

3. Ability to set up, organize, and maintain record systems.


GS-5 (Full Performance Level):
a. Experience or Education: One year of experience equivalent to the next lower grade level (GS-4) that indicates the ability to acquire the particular knowledge and skills needed to perform the duties of the position, as outlined below, OR 4 years of education above high school (copy of official/unofficial transcripts are required if qualifying based on education).

b. Assignment. This is the full performance level for MSAs. At this level, the MSA performs a full range of duties. The MSA is responsible for 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’s appointments and/or consults; entering no-show information; monitoring the electronic wait list; preparing for clinic visits; monitoring both inpatient and outpatient appointments for areas of responsibility; ensuring encounter forms are completed in order to obtain appropriate workload credit; verifying and updating demographics and insurance information; processing all emergency and non-emergency transfers to other VA facilities or private hospitals; performing basic eligibility, co-pays and preauthorization requirements for specific coverage (i.e., TRICARE, sharing agreements, etc.).

c. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities. Candidates must demonstrate the KSAs below in their resume.  Narrative responses are NOT needed, the selectee will be required to provide a narrative response.

1. Ability to operate computerized programs and databases in order to enter, modify, and retrieve sensitive information/data into or from electronic medical records, scheduling systems and/or reports.

2. Knowledge of basic medical terminology.

3. Ability to make appointments in a clinical setting.

4. Ability to work independently in the accomplishment of a wide variety of duties, including setting priorities and coordinating work.

5. Ability to communicate effectively and professionally with employees at varying grade levels.

6. Ability to identify customer's concerns, perform the tasks required to resolve the issue accurately and timely, and follow-up as necessary to ensure a satisfactory resolution.


IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE. Please be sure to include the month and year for each position held and a description of the duties performed in each position.  If the position was held on a part-time basis you must include the number of hours worked each week.  Failure to include the required information in your resume will result in missed consideration for this position.  If multiple resumes are submitted, only the most recent resume submitted will be used to determine your qualifications for this position. 

References : VA Handbook 5005 at (also available in the local Human Resources Office) 

PLEASE NOTE:  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 (particularly positions with a positive education requirement.)  Therefore, applicants must report only attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.  Applicants can verify accreditation at the following website: All education claimed by applicants will be verified by the appointing agency accordingly.  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.



This work is partly sedentary and requires bending, waling, standing, and carrying or pulling of items weighing up to 25 pounds. May involve travel to and from the parent facility and satellite facilities as needed.


Work is performed in an indoor call center setting with close proximity to other staff members. The employee is not generally subject to unusual exposure risk or discomforts but certain safety precautions may be necessary. The work is generally performed in a temperature-controlled environment with adequate lighting throughout the workplace. Work may also include periods of travel.

Veterans' Preference: When applying for Federal Jobs, eligible Veterans should claim preference on the Occupational Questionnaire in the section provided and provide a legible copy of your DD214(s) and/or documentation related to your active duty service which shows dates of service, character of service (honorable, general, etc.), or 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 Veterans Preference" with required proof as stated on the form.  For more information, please review the information for disabled Veterans in the application
checklist or visit


Your application, résumé and/or supporting documentation will be verified.  Please follow all instructions carefully.  Errors or omissions may affect consideration for employment.


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Working for the Department of Veterans Affairs offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes, in part, paid vacation, sick leave, holidays, life insurance, health benefits, thrift savings plan, and participation in the Federal Employees Retirement System. In addition to traditional "dollars and cents" benefits, we offer a range of benefits to help balance work and life.  For more information please visit us at

Receiving Service Credit for 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.  


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


This announcement may beused to fill fulltime or part time positions.

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


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It is requested that applicants please include 2 supervisory references in your application package, 1 for a current supervisor and 1 for a former supervisor.  Applicants who do not submit their references will still be considered for this vacancy.

To apply for this position, you must complete the occupational questionnaire and submit the documentation specified in the Required Documents section below.

The complete application package must be submitted by 11:59 PM (EST) on Thursday, June 27, 2013Thursday, June 27, 2013 to receive consideration.

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

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 USAJOBS 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 USAJOBS account and click Update Application in the vacancy announcement.  You must re-select your resume and/or other documents from your USAJOBS account or your application will be incomplete.

Applicants are urged to apply online; this process is much easier and faster.  If you cannot apply online you may mail, drop off, or fax your application package as follows. NOTE:  If the documents specified in the "Required Documents" section below are not provided, your application will not receive further consideration and you will be rated as ineligible.

*YOU MUST INCLUDE VA FORM 10-2850c IN YOUR APPLICATION PACKAGE TO BE CONSIDERED FOR THIS VACANCY.  IF THIS FORM IS NOT INCLUDED, YOU WILL BE RATED INELIGIBLE.*   You may upload the completed form to your USAJOBS or Application Manager account if you apply online.  Then you can use the uploaded form again and again when applying for future vacancies.  Please see this guide ( for more information on uploading and re-using the form in your applications.  Other required forms and documents can also be saved in your account and used the same way.  Applicants are urged to apply online; this process is much easier and faster.

If you are not or cannot apply online and are submitting your entire application via fax:

1.    Click the following link to view and print the occupational questionnaire:

View Occupational Questionnaire


2.    Print this 1203FX form to provide your response to the occupational questionnaire:

3.    Fax the completed 1203FX form along with all supporting documents to (478)757-3144.  Your 1203FX form must be placed on top of all materials being faxed and will serve as a cover page for your fax transmission.

The 1203FX form MUST serve as a cover page for your initial fax transmission or your application will not be uploaded/scanned into the system and there will be no record of your application.  If you need to fax additional documents after your initial fax transmission, you must complete the cover page (see instructions below) to use as your fax cover sheet. Keep a copy of your fax confirmation in case verification is needed. 

 To fax additional supporting documents:

If you need to fax supporting documents because you either applied online and were unable to upload the documents OR you have already faxed your initial application using the 1203FX form as your cover page, as specified above:

1.    Complete this cover page using the following Vacancy ID: 876320.  You must use this fax cover sheet in order for your documents to be matched with your online application. 

2.    Fax your documents to (478)757-3144.  Keep a copy of your fax confirmation in case verification is needed.

The complete Application Package must be submitted by 11:59 PM (EST) on Thursday, June 27, 2013.


You must provide a complete Application Package which includes the below documents. 


  1. 1. Resume (OF-612 IS OBSOLETE, DO NOT SUBMIT).
  2. 2. VA Form 10-2850c - Application for Associated Health Occupations (Available at (*If this form is not submitted as part of your application package, you will be rated as ineligible.*)
  3. 3. If you are a current Federal employee you must submit your most recent SF-50 (Notification of Personnel Action) which includes current position series, grade, and step.
  4. 4. Occupational Questionnaire (View Occupational Questionnaire) (If applying online, you will be prompted to respond electronically.  If submitting application via fax, you must complete the 1203FX form).
  5. 5. If using education to qualify, a copy of your official/unofficial transcripts.  You MUST include a copy of transcript (official or unofficial) or course listing or certificate with your application.  Education cannot be credited without documentation.
  6. 6. Other documents - use this checklist to make sure you have included other documents required for your application, such as a copy of your transcripts (if using education to qualify), documentation to support Veterans Preference claims, and SF 50 (Notification of Personnel Action) if a current Federal Employee.


VASDHS Human Resources
Phone: (858)552-8585x3401
Agency Information:
VHA San Diego HCS
Human Resources
San Diego, CA


After the vacancy announcement closes, your qualifications will be reviewed.  We will also review your application to make sure that your résumé supports the answers given in the questionnaire. If your résumé does not support your questionnaire answers, you may be found ineligible for the position. A referral certificate of qualified applicants is issued to the hiring manager within 10 calendar days after the vacancy announcement closes.  Once the qualification review is complete, an electronic notification letter - or e-mail - will be sent to applicants who provide an e-mail address.  Otherwise, you will receive a notification letter via the U.S. Postal Service within 2 to 4 weeks.

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