Psychologist (Special Medical Exams Department Head)

Department Of Veterans Affairs North Chicago , IL 60031

Posted 3 months ago

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  • Duties




The Clinical Psychologist Department Head will manage the Special Medical Examination program at CAPT James A. Lovell FHCC. The Special Medical Examinations Program consists of five distinct elements that must be managed for the program to be fully successful. These elements are Disability and Medical Assessment (Compensation and Pension [C&P]), Medical Opinions, Agent Orange Registry, FSAD-CORREIA, and the Integrated Disability Evaluation System.

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Major Functions:

  • Supervisory Responsibilities:

  • As the liaison for the FHCC, the Special Medical Exams (SME) Clinical Psychologist Department Head demonstrates leadership in the SME Service and demonstrate the ability to work effectively between the Veterans Health Administration (VHA), Veteran's Benefits Administration (VBA), Board of Veteran's Appeals (BVA), Disability and Medical Assessment (DMA) and the Veterans Benefits Administration and the Veterans Administration Central Office.

  • Responsible for strategic planning for the Special Medical Examination program to ensure the provision of high quality evaluation services to meet the needs of the Veterans being served, and planning, and developing and implementing short- and long-term goals and objectives consistent with the program's strategic plan.

  • Develops and implements programs, policies, and procedures to meet program goals that are consistent with local guidelines.

  • Resolves informal complaints and grievances.

  • Assures that supervisees are trained and fully comply with the provisions of the safety regulations.

  • Supervises employees to accomplish the work of the organizational unit.

  • Clinical Elements:

  • Provides full range of psychological assessment services and diagnoses mental disorders for veterans who have submitted claims to the regional office through the compensation and pension process.

  • Functions independently as a member of the FHCC Medical Staff, with clinical privileges limited to assessment of psychological disorders.

  • Independently conducts and reports on the individual psychological examination of routinely referred patients.

  • Assumes complete professional responsibility for clinical assessment findings.

  • May also be responsible for teaching Psychology Interns who may be rotating through SME for training.

Work Schedule: Full-time; Monday-Friday 8:00 am-4:30 pm

Virtual: This is not a virtual position.

Functional Statement #: PD000000

Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not authorized

Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not authorized

Financial Disclosure Report: Not required

Travel Required

Occasional travel - You may be expected to travel for this position.

Supervisory status


Promotion Potential


  • Job family (Series)

0180 Psychology

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  • 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

  • Participation in the seasonal influenza and Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Vaccination programs are requirements for all Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care Personnel (HCP)


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: Psychologists must be proficient in spoken and written English in accordance with VA Handbook 5005, Part II, Chapter 3, section A, paragraph 3j.

  • Education:

  • (1) Have a doctoral degree in psychology from a graduate program in psychology accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA), the Psychological Clinical Science Accreditation System (PCSAS), or the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) at the time the program was completed. The specialty area of the degree must be consistent with the assignment for which the applicant is to be employed. For the purpose of meeting this requirement, the term "specialty area" refers to the specific specialty areas recognized by the accrediting body and not to specific job duties that might require special skills. Currently, APA accredits doctoral programs in the specialty areas of clinical psychology, counseling psychology, school psychology, or combinations of two or more of those areas. PCSAS accredits doctoral programs in psychological clinical science. CPA accredits doctoral programs in clinical psychology, counseling psychology, clinical neuropsychology, and school psychology.

  • NOTE: There are no job assignments in VHA that require the skills of a school psychologist; therefore, an applicant with a degree in the specialty area of school psychology is not eligible for appointment.

  • OR

  • (2) Have a doctoral degree in any area of psychology and, in addition, successfully complete a re-specialization program (including documentation of an approved internship completed as part of the re-specialization program) meeting both of the following conditions:

  • (a) The re-specialization program must be completed in an APA or a CPA accredited doctoral program; and,

  • (b) the specialty in which the applicant is retrained must be consistent with the assignment for which the applicant is to be employed.

  • OR

  • (3) Have a doctoral degree awarded between 1951 and 1978 from a regionally-accredited institution, with a dissertation primarily psychological in nature.

  • AND

  • (4) Internships:

  • (a) Have successfully completed a professional psychology internship training program that was accredited by APA or CPA at the time the program was completed and that is consistent with the assignment for which the applicant is to be employed.

  • OR

  • (b) New VHA psychology internship programs that are in the process of applying for APA accreditation are acceptable in fulfillment of the internship requirement, provided that such programs were sanctioned by the VHA Central Office Program Director for Psychology and the VHA Office of Academic Affiliations at the time that the individual was an intern;

  • OR

  • (c) VHA facilities that offered full-time, one-year pre-doctoral internships prior to PL 96-151 (pre-1979) are considered to be acceptable in fulfillment of the internship requirement;

  • OR

  • (d) Applicants who completed an internship that was not accredited by APA or CPA at the time the program was completed may be considered eligible for hire only if they are currently board certified by the American Board of Professional Psychology in a specialty area that is consistent with the assignment for which the applicant is to be employed. (NOTE: Once board certified, the employee is required to maintain board certification.)

  • OR

  • (e) Applicants who have a doctoral degree awarded between 1951 and 1978 from a regionally-accredited institution with a dissertation primarily psychological in nature may fulfill this internship requirement by having the equivalent of a one-year supervised internship experience in a site specifically acceptable to the candidate's doctoral program. If the internship experience is not noted on the applicant's official transcript, the applicant must provide a statement from the doctoral program verifying that the equivalent of a one-year supervised internship experience was completed in a site acceptable to the doctoral program.

  • Licensure: Hold a full, current, and unrestricted license to practice psychology at the doctoral level in a State, Territory, or Commonwealth of the United States, or the District of Columbia.

Grade Determinations:

  • Experience, GS-14: At least three years of experience as a professional psychologist, with at least one year equivalent to the GS-13 grade level. This experience may have involved program evaluation, teaching, training, and research activities along with practicing independently in the provision of psychological services, consulting with peers and supervisors as appropriate.
  • AND
  • Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSAs), GS-14: In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate all of the following KSAs:
    1. Ability to organize work, set priorities, delegate tasks, and meet multiple deadlines.

    1. Knowledge of and ability to utilize evidence based practices and clinical practice guidelines appropriately and ability to guide staff in using these tools.

    1. Ability to deal effectively with individuals or groups representing widely divergent backgrounds, interests, and points of view.

    1. Skill in managing and directing the work of others to accomplish program goals and objectives.

    1. Ability to translate management goals and objectives into well-coordinated and controlled work operations.

    1. Ability to establish and monitor production and performance priorities and standards.

    1. Ability to analyze organizational and operational problems and to develop and implement solutions that result in sound operation of the program.

References: VA Handbook 5005, Part II, Appendix G18.

The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-14.

Physical Requirements:The work is sedentary. There may be some walking, standing, bending, and carrying of light items.


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:

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Psychologist (Special Medical Exams Department Head)

Department Of Veterans Affairs