Medical Support Assistant

Perry Point, Maryland
Jun 04, 2021
Jun 12, 2021
Full Time


The Medical Support Assistant is assigned to the Therapy Department within Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Service (PM&RS) of the VA Maryland Healthcare System, which is a Complexity Level Ib facility.

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The Medical Support Assistant (MSA) is able to independently manage position responsibilities with minimal supervision, as well as set priorities and deadlines, adjusting the flow and sequencing of the work to meet team and patient needs.

The MSA functions as an expert authority for all tasks associated with patient enrollment and registration, admissions, outpatient scheduling, beneficiary travel, and identification and capture of insurance information. As an expert, the MSA provides technical support to professional staff and other medical center employees, advising staff on appropriate administrative procedures to follow.

The major duties of this position include but are not limited to:
  • Provides support when necessary via phone and face-to- face interactions with patients, their families, staff, and external agencies.
  • Assists via various administrative tasks including data collection for clinician productivity, program evaluations, and completion of paperwork essential to the functioning of outpatient physical medicine and rehabilitation service.
  • Primary responsibility and accountability for the performance of administrative duties associated with coordination and scheduling of appointments, receptionist, performing record keeping duties, workload capture, procurement of medical supplies as purchase card holder, timekeeper, TMS administrator and general clerical and administrative support to the Site Coordinator's at the respective facility.
  • Practical knowledge of computerized data entry and information processing systems, the medical facility's organization and services, basic rules and regulations governing visitors and patient treatment, practical knowledge of the standard procedures, medical records, and medical terminology of the PMRS clinics.
  • Prepare special program reports as requested by management.
  • Perform clerical work in support of the care and treatment given to patients such as receiving patients or maintain patient files; work administering or advising on medical records systems; or work maintaining medical records in PMRS clinics.
  • Provide backup support for other PMRS program support functions, at any of the medical center facilities throughout VAMHCS (Baltimore, Perry Point, or Loch Raven).
  • Respond to technical questions regarding patient rights, responsibilities, and general medical eligibility for care.
  • Consistent with VHA, VAMHCS, and PM&RS guidelines, the MSA establishes internal procedures, files, reports, tracking mechanism, computers report, etc. for existing and new programmatic needs
  • Assists as needed in tracking wait times for clinics, scheduling issues, and encounter completion.
  • Provide orientation to VISTA for new staff and will assist with clinic and appointment coordination for all program staff.
  • May assist with scheduling PM&RS meetings when necessary and takes minutes for the PM&RS meeting and other meetings when indicated.
  • Prepare a wide variety of material such as forms for clinic cancellations, clinic setup, change forms, faxes, memorandums, and reports. MSA also prepares documents and correspondence for special reports and research appropriate policies/directives to assist in resolving issues.
  • Assist in ordering supplies, ensuring that required equipment is in working order, and handling the screening and sorting of correspondence and faxes as requested.
  • All other duties as assigned, pertaining to this occupation, to meet the needs of the Agency, Department, Facility, and/or Service.

Work Schedule: Monday thru Friday; 8:00AM to 4:30PM
Telework Eligible: Not Eligible
Financial Disclosure Report: Not required

Travel Required

Occasional travel - You may be required to occasionally travel to other VA Maryland Health Care System Medical Centers, and/or CBOC's.

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
  • 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.

Basic Requirements:
  • United States Citizenship. Citizen of the United States (Non-citizens may only be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Policy).
  • 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.
  • Physical Requirements. Have the mental, emotional and physical ability to satisfactorily perform the duties of the proposed assignment and pass the requisite laboratory and other screening as required by Federal regulatory
  • English Language Proficiency. Must be proficient in spoken and written English.
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).

Grade Determinations: Medical Support Assistant GS-5:

Experience. One year of experience equivalent to the GS-4 grade level or fours years of education above high school.

Examples of assignments and knowledge, skills and abilities at the GS-05 grade level include but are not limited to:
Assignment: The MSAindependently 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.).
KSA'S: i. 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. ii. Advanced knowledge of medical terminology specific to understand medical diagnosis and procedures sufficient to communicate clinical staff instructions to patients. iii. Ability to schedule medical appointments in a clinical setting. iv. Ability to work independently in the accomplishment of a wide variety of duties performing patient support work. v. Ability to communicate effectively and professionally in person, electronically, and/or by telephone, with internal and external customers. vi. Skill in customer service with the ability to identify customer concerns, and refer to the appropriate staff, as necessary, to ensure a satisfactory resolution.

Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. Candidates must demonstrate all of he 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, Dated: August 1, 2019

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-5 to GS-5.

Physical Requirements: The Medical Support Assistant position has physical requirements that include: light lifting, less than 10 lbs; use of fingers, both hands required; sitting/typing at computer workstation (8 hours); far vision correctable in one eye to 20/20 and to 20/40 in the other; ability to distinguish basic colors; ability to distinguish shades of colors; hearing (aid permitted), and mental and emotional stability. Sitting is required for meetings and administrative work. May be exposed to infectious diseases, medical and psychiatric emergencies.


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.

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
  • SF-50/ Notification of Personnel Action

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 -
  • Performance Appraisal
  • Resume
  • SF-50/ Notification of Personnel Action
  • Transcript

VA Form 10-2850c Application for Associated Health Occupations can be found at: .

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.