Clinical Pharmacy Specialist

Perry Point, Maryland
Sep 14, 2019
Sep 21, 2019
Full Time


The clinical pharmacy specialist (CPS) functions at the highest level of clinical practice, works independently under their scope of practice as defined by the individual medical center to directly care for patients. A CPS plays a defined role in budgetary execution and serves as a mid-level provider who functions to initiate, modify or discontinue medication therapy and as a consultant for intensive medication therapy management services.
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The Clinical Pharmacy Specialist (CPS) provides pharmaceutical care services through direct interaction with patients and providers and functions at the highest level of clinical practice working independently under their individualized scope of practice. The Clinical Pharmacy Specialist serves as a Licensed Independent Provider (LIP) on the Mental Health and Patient Aligned Care Teams (PACT) who functions to initiate, modify or discontinue medication therapy and as a consultant for intensive medication therapy management services. These activities require a great degree of skill in patient monitoring, drug therapy review and assessment of patient outcomes. The CPS medication therapy management services include, but are not limited to: designing, implementing, assessing, monitoring and documenting therapeutic plans utilizing the most effective, least toxic and most economical medications. The CPS participates in review and adjudication of Prior Authorization and Non-Formulary Medication Requests. The CPS performs physical assessment, orders and interprets laboratory and other diagnostic tests utilized to monitor and assess outcomes of drug therapy. This contributes to the achievement of positive patient centered care. The CPS performs the full range of professional practices of pharmacy and serves as a resource to other pharmacists and health care professionals. Expanded clinical functions are based upon the individuals approved Scope of Practice which is delineated in writing and includes a description of the patient care services provided, the population served and the general areas of responsibility. The Scope of Practice is approved by the Chief of Staff as chairperson of the Executive Committee of the Medical Staff. (SEE "QUALIFICATIONS" FOR ADDITIONAL DUTIES DESCRIPTION)

Work Schedule: Monday - Friday 8:00 am - 4:30 pm, possible rotations to include Saturdays
Financial Disclosure Report: Not required

Travel Required

25% or less - You may be expected to travel for this position.

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


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
  • American Heart Association Basic Life Saver Certification


Duties continued: CPS is expected to participate in the Pharmacy's mission of training and educating various pharmacy students (VALOR, IPPE, OPPE) and/or pharmacy residents at the VAMHCS. The CPS functions in the capacity of a Clinical Pharmacist (CP) (20 - 25%) in any area of competency as staffing requirements dictate. The CPS in this assignment manages routine medication-related activities in accordance with VHA, DEA, FDA, Joint Commission, VISN and VAMHCS and other governing regulations, standards and policies. The incumbent is responsible for reviewing, interpreting, and verifying medication orders for appropriateness; along with processing and dispensing of inpatient and outpatient medications orders. Skills in monitoring and assessing the outcome of drug therapies, including physical assessment and interpretation of laboratory and other diagnostic parameters are required in all assignment areas. The incumbent provides optimal pharmaceutical care and timely customer service in accordance with the mission, vision and goal of the VAMHCS.

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.
  • Graduate of an Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) accredited College or School of Pharmacy with a baccalaureate degree in pharmacy (BS Pharmacy) and/or a Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degree.
  • Licensure. Full, current and unrestricted license to practice pharmacy in a State, Territory, Commonwealth of the United States (i.e., Puerto Rico), or the District of Columbia.
SPECIALIZED EXPERIENCE: Applicants must possess the experience described in either 1 or 2 below:
  • Completion of Pharmacy Residency in Psychiatry
  • OR
  • Evidence of 2 years equivalent experiences in direct patient care in Outpatient Mental / Behavioral Health - collaborative pharmacotherapy for behavioral health / chronic disease management - including:
  • a. conducting comprehensive medical and medication histories from patients and/or their records
    b. evaluating drug therapy through direct patient care involvement, with clinical assessment of subjective and objective findings relating to patient's response(s) to drug therapy
    c. developing, recommending therapeutic plans utilizing the most effective, least toxic and most economical pharmacological treatment (as defined by VHA PBM National Guidelines)
    d. Interacting directly with patients and/or caregivers, providing oral and written counseling on their medication therapy
    e. Reconciling patients' medication orders
    f. Conducting face to face, virtual care, group or shared medical appointments to provide behavioral health / chronic disease state and or medication management services.
    g. Prescribing medications, including initiation, continuation, discontinuation, and adjusting therapy (based upon the established Formulary and published Criteria for Use or Treatment Guidelines) as approved within Scope of Practice
    h. Monitoring and reporting of medication errors, adverse drug events (ADEs) and medication allergies

    Grade Determinations: GS-13
    The CPS must apply for a specific Scope of Practice through the Chief, Pharmacy Service. Approval is based upon a professional practice evaluation and review of work performance, experience, demonstrated competence and documented education. The Clinical Pharmacy Specialist must participate in clinical pertinence review programs and apply for renewal or amendment of their Scope of Practice per current policy.

    Experience. In addition to the basic requirements, must have 1 year of experience equivalent to the next lower grade level. Pharmacists assigned to this position must demonstrate the following KSAs:

    a. Ability to communicate orally and in writing to persuade and influence clinical and management decisions.
    b. Expert understanding of regulatory and quality standards for their program area.
    c. Ability to solve problems, coordinate and organize responsibilities to maximize outcomes in their program area or area of clinical expertise.
    d. Expert knowledge of a specialized area of clinical pharmacy practice or specialty area of pharmacy.
    e. Advanced skill in monitoring and assessing the outcome of drug therapies, including physical assessment and interpretation of laboratory and other diagnostic parameters.

    References: VA Handbook 5005/55, Part II, Appendix G-15

    Physical Requirements: A pre-placement physical examination is required for all full-time, part-time and intermittent employees identified by VA Directive and Handbook 5019. The pre-placement physical examination shall be completed prior to appointment to determine the physical and mental fitness of candidates for appointment in VA. The examination will be concerned with the mental and physical ability of the applicant to satisfactorily perform the duties of the proposed assignment and will include requisite laboratory and other screening as required by Federal regulatory agencies.


    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 .

    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 recommend 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.

    Background checks and security clearance

    Security clearance

    Drug test required

    Position sensitivity and risk
    Non-sensitive (NS)/Low Risk

    Trust determination process

    Required Documents

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

    • Resume
    Current VA and other Federal employees are required to provide SF50(s) in accordance with the checklist below.

    VA Form 10-2850c Application for Associated Health Occupations can be found at: . (PREFERRED, BUT NOT REQUIRED AT TIME OF APPLICATION)

    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)
    • License
    • OF-306
    • VA Form 10-2850c
    • Resume
    • SF-15
    • SF-50/ Notification of Personnel Action
    • Transcript

    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 .

    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.

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