Physician Assistant-Surgical Service

Hampton, Virginia
Sep 21, 2021
Sep 25, 2021
Full Time


A PA is a credentialed health care professional who provides patient centered medical care to assigned patients as a member of a health care team. PAs practice with clinical oversight, consultation, and input by a designated collaborating physician. Although PAs are not Licensed Independent Practitioners, they are authorized to practice with defined levels of autonomy and exercise independent medical decision making within their scope of practice.
Learn more about this agency


Scope of Practice Core Elements . The core PA Scope of Practice elements are based on nationally standardized training by PA training programs accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on the Education of Physician Assistants (ARC-PA) and the ongoing medical knowledge and clinical skills assessment performed by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA). The core elements for a PA Scope of Practice may include, but are not limited to:
(1) Obtaining medical histories and performing physical examinations.
(2) Providing and coordinating medical care for assigned patients in any care setting, including establishing diagnoses, formulating and implementing care plans, and providing follow-up care.
(3) Evaluating outpatients to determine the need for further health care.
(4) Ordering diagnostic studies and other special tests, such as Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), Computerized Tomography (CT) scans, etc.
(5) Carrying out health promotion, disease prevention, and patient education activities.
(6) Ordering or obtaining laboratory specimens.
(7) Ordering ancillary services, such as, pharmacy, social services, physical medicine and rehabilitation therapies, prosthetic services, etc.
(8) Ordering VA specialty service consults and initiating requests for non-VA medical care and consults in accordance with VHA and local facility policy and procedures.
(9) Ordering patient care supplies.
(10) Writing orders for or prescribing medications (see paragraph c. of this App
(11) Admitting and discharging patients in consultation with, and on behalf of, the collaborating physician, obtaining admission history and performing physical examinations, conducting patient rounds, documenting progress notes and summaries in the patient record, and writing patient orders on assigned patients. PAs may be delegated the responsibility of documenting operative notes if the PA was present for the procedure, but the operative surgeon must review and co-sign the note. The PA may also be delegated the task of documenting the discharge summary, but the collaborating physician must write a discharge note, or co-sign the discharge summary written by the PA in accordance with The Joint Commission standards that are applicable.
(12) Other patient record entries by PAs, including medical histories, physical examinations, progress notes, service consults, Compensation and Pension evaluations, and patient orders do not require physician co-signature unless specifically required by Federal law, VA policy, or the standards of applicable external accrediting bodies.
(13) Obtaining and documenting informed consent for treatments and procedures for which the PA is responsible. The PA's Scope of Practice must authorize obtaining informed consent for the treatment or procedure being performed. In addition, the Scope of Practice must authorize the PA to perform the procedure or provide the treatment for which the consent is being obtained or to actively participate as an integral member of the treatment team performing the procedure such as assisting the primary surgeon. NOTE: The PA need not participate in the particular procedure the patient is scheduled to undergo but the PA must be authorized to perform or participate in the procedure by their Scope of Practice and must have sufficient knowledge and training in the treatment or procedure, its indications, risk and benefits, complications, and alternative treatments, to effectively counsel the patient.
(14) Providing education and counseling of patients and families in preventive care, medical conditions, and the use of prescribed treatments and drugs.
(15) PAs may prescribe or order all medications listed in the VA National Formulary
consistent with the PA's level of prescribing authority and practice setting. Exceptions include medications restricted to specific clinical services outside of the PA's practice setting and those specifically restricted by VHA or local VA medical facility policy. An individual medication formulary included in the Scope of Practice is not required.
(16) Controlled Substances. Authorization for medication prescribing or inpatient ordering of controlled substances can only be granted in accordance with the Federal Controlled Substances Act and applicable regulations contained in Title 21 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Chapter II, Part 1306. PAs may be authorized to prescribe or order controlled substances utilizing the PA's individual Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registration when:
(a) The schedules of drugs the PA is authorized to prescribe by their Scope of Practice is consistent with the schedules established by the PA's State licensure or those included on the PA's individual DEA registration certificate, whichever is more restrictive.

Work Schedule: 8:00AM - 4:30PM - Monday - Friday
Financial Discloser Report: Not required

Travel Required

Not required

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • U.S. Citizenship; non-citizens may only be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Policy.
  • All applicants tentatively selected for VA employment in a testing designated position are subject to urinalysis to screen for illegal drug use prior to appointment. Applicants who refuse to be tested will be denied employment with VA.
  • Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959
  • Must be proficient in written and spoken English
  • You may be required to serve a probationary period
  • Subject to a background/security investigation
  • Selected applicants will be required to complete an online onboarding process
  • Must pass pre-employment physical examination
  • 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)


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: Non-citizens may only be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Policy.
  • Graduate of a training program which is accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education of PA (ARC-PA) or one of its predecessor organizations. Additionally, candidates must meet one of the following: (1) Master's degree in any discipline; OR (2) Bachelor's degree in any discipline with one year of experience as a PA.
  • Must have successfully passed the PA National Certifying Exam (PANCE).
  • PAs must possess an active, current, full, and unrestricted license to practice in a State, Territory, or Commonwealth of the United States, or in the District of Columbia. PAs must maintain current registration in the State of licensure if this is a requirement for continuing active and current licensure in that State. -
    • - Exceptions for Graduate PAs.
    • (a) PAs who otherwise meet the basic requirements, but do not possess the required licensure, may be appointed, pending licensure, as a graduate PA on a temporary full-time appointment not-to-exceed two years under the authority of 38 U.S.C. § 7405(c)(2)(B).
    • (b) Graduate PAs may only be appointed at the entry grade level and may not be promoted/converted until certification is obtained.
    • (c) Temporary graduate PA appointments may not be extended beyond two years or converted to a new temporary appointment.
    • NOTE: Individuals who have or have had multiple licenses and had any such license revoked for professional misconduct, professional incompetence or substandard care, or who surrendered such license after receiving written notice of potential termination of such license by the State for professional misconduct, professional incompetence, or substandard care, are not eligible for appointment to the position unless such revoked or surrendered license is fully restored (38 U.S.C. § 7402(f)). This requirement does not apply to licensed PAs currently employed by VA as of November 30, 1999, provided they maintain continuous appointment and are not disqualified for employment by any subsequent revocations or voluntary surrenders of State license, registration or certification

The full performance level of this vacancy is VN-0603-III. The actual grade at which an applicant may be selected for this vacancy is in the range of VN-0603-I to VN-0603-III.

Grade Determinations: : In addition to the basic requirements stated above, the following qualification criteria must be met in determining the appropriate grade assignment of candidates:

  • Physician Assistant-I (PA-I)
    (a) Experience and Education. None beyond the basic requirements. This is the entry level for PAs.
    (b) Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. The following list of knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSA) present the minimum skill set expected of an Entry Level PA. This practice may include but is not limited to:
    i. Ability to utilize the principles of PA practice in the care of assigned patients to provide appropriate care.
    ii. Ability to perform patient history and physical.
    iii. Ability to formulate a plan and provide treatment to the patient.
    iv. Ability to provide patient care that is abreast of changing concepts and advancements in the profession.
    (2) Physician Assistant-II (PA-II)
    (a) Experience and Education. The PA at this grade is at the intermediate grade level and has had progressively increasing responsibility and experiences as indicated in the KSAs listed below. Individuals will have demonstrated the ability to analyze and solve more complex medical problems than at the entry level grade and can utilize their training in the successful practice of patient care and participate in team problem solving. Individuals demonstrate the KSAs of PA-II intermediate level by
    i. Two years of successful practice as a PA.
    ii. Successful completion of a PA post-graduate residency program sponsored by VHA Office of Academic Affiliations or other postgraduate residency programs accredited by VA, ARC-PA, U.S. Armed Forces, or another accrediting agency.
    iii. A doctoral degree in a health-related field from an accredited college or university recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
    (b) Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSAs). PAs at this level are not required to meet each individual KSA listed below to qualify, but should be able to demonstrate, develop, or acquire those not met upon appointment for PA-II:
    i. Skills to analyze and solve complex medical problems.
    ii. Ability to function autonomously and make independent medical decisions.
    iii. Skill to incorporate training and experience into the successful practice of patient care including telehealth medical care.
    iv. Ability to work effectively in an interdisciplinary environment for improvement of services for patient care.
    v. Ability to practice with colleagues and peers collaboratively.
    (3) Physician Assistant-III (PA-III)
    (a) Experience and Education. PAs at the PA-III grade are at the full performance level and lead and organize patient care independently, practice within multidisciplinary teams, and coordinate all aspects of patient care across the health care system. They utilize advanced clinical knowledge and judgment in decision-making and evaluating outcomes. They function as experts in clinical practice and/or in areas related to the assigned roles and responsibilities, may serve as mentors for transitioning PAs, and may provide training for health care students. Individuals can demonstrate the KSAs for the full performance level by:
    i. Three years of successful practice as a PA.
    ii. Successful completion of a PA post-graduate residency program sponsored by VHA Office of Academic Affiliations or other postgraduate residency programs accredited by VA, ARC-PA, U.S. Armed Forces, or another accrediting agency and one year of professional practice as a PA.
    iii. A doctoral degree in a health-related field from an accredited college or university recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and one year of professional practice as a PA.
    (b) Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. PAs at this level are not required to meet each individual KSA listed below to qualify, but should be able to demonstrate, develop, or acquire those not met upon appointment for PA-III:
    i. Ability to clinically evaluate facility patient care delivery systems and validate or identify barriers to safe and effective patient care.
    ii. Skill to consistently demonstrate an elevated level of expertise and autonomy in diagnosing and treating seriously ill, multi-symptomatic patients through facility Focused Professional Practice Evaluation (FPPE) and Ongoing Professional Practice Evaluation (OPPE).
    iii. Ability to present clinical findings and recommendations to appropriate management officials.
    iv. Ability to clinically facilitate the delivery of patient care in collaboration with health professionals, health managers, and other health care personnel.
    v. Ability to implement and initiate clinical changes to established treatment protocols based upon new medical literature research findings to enhance patient delivery care for improved patient outcomes.
    vi. Ability to participate clinically in the development of the PA patient care audit processes involving in-depth review and analysis of medical records.

    Reference: VA Handbook 5005/134-September 27, 2020, PART II APPENDIX G8. This can be found in the local Human Resources Office.
    Physical Requirements: See VA Directives and Handbook 5019, Employee Occupational Health Service.

  • Education

    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

    Testing Designated Position: All applicants tentatively selected for VA employment in a testing designated position are subject to urinalysis to screen for illegal drug use prior to appointment. Applicants who refuse to be tested will be denied employment with VA.

    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 or need to fax a document you do not have in electronic form, 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.

    A formal pay-setting process will be used to determine your salary. The salary may be at any point in the range listed for this vacancy.

    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
    Not Required

    Drug test required

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

    Trust determination process
    Credentialing , Suitability/Fitness

    Required Documents

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

    • VA Form 10-2850c
    • Resume

    VA Form 10-2850 an be found at:

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

    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.

    Similar jobs