The cardiac sonographer has the intimate knowledge of thoracic anatomy and physiology as related to cardiovascular function. Incumbent will identify and record anomalies indicative of disease, injury, or other medically significant condition from ultrasound imaging and simultaneous recordings of the Doppler. Incumbent incorporates the causes and results of a variety of symptoms and conditions into the plan for the ultrasonic diagnostic examination. 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. Licensure or Certification. Licensure or Certification is not required for this occupation; however, it is strongly desirable at GS-6 or above as evidence of possession of the essential knowledge, skills, and abilities. For certain functional areas at the higher levels or supervisory assignments, specific certifications appropriate to the specialty are indicated in this standard under "Titles and Certification/Registrations". For all specialties identified in this standard, Basic and Advanced Cardiac Life Support certifications are desirable. Training which does not result in official certification does not meet this definition. English Language Proficiency. Medical Instrument Technicians must be proficient in spoken and written English in accordance with chapter 2, section D, paragraph 5a, this part. 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: GS-9 Medical Instrument Technician (Echocardiography) Experience. At least 1 year experience comparable to the next lower grade level, which is directly related to the duties of the position to be filled, and must fully meet the KSAs at that level. This would be experience which demonstrates possession of the knowledge required in order to provide all aspects of echocardiography services. In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the following technical KSAs and the potential to acquire the assignment specific KSAs designated by an asterisk (*): Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. KSAs 1, 2, and 3 are appropriate for all positions at this level. KSAs 4 and 5 are to be used in accordance with their appropriateness for the specific assignment. Knowledge of the more complex examination and treatment procedures and techniques in order to provide training and supervision in these procedures, to evaluate and initiate performance improvement projects, and to write policies, procedures, and protocols, that pertain to Echocardiography. * Knowledge of JCAHO and other regulatory requirements. * Ability to communicate effectively and professionally with employees at varying grade levels. * Ability to manage and supervise employees. * Ability to provide, or provide for, staff development and training. Certification. Registration by Cardiovascular Credentialing International (CCI) as a Registered Cardiac Sonographer (RCS) or by the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (ARDMS) as a Registered Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographer (RDCS) is highly desirable. Basic Cardiac Life Support (BCLS) and Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) certifications are also desirable. Preferred Experience: Expertise in transthoracic echocardiography, stress echocardiography (including exercise and dobutamine), left ventricular enhancing contrast studies, skills in transesophageal 3-D imaging reconstruction and assistance with transesophageal echocardiography. Echocardiography certification. References: VA Handbook 5005/54, Part II, Appendix G27, Medical Instrument Technician (Echocardiography) Qualification Standards. The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-9. Physical Requirements: Light lifting, under 15 lbs., moderate carrying, 15-44 lbs., reaching above shoulder, use of fingers, standing 4-6 hours; hearing, aid permitted. Duties require extensive use of fingers to perform keyboarding and the ability to hear requests by phone and in person. Version must be adequate to read and prepare documents. ["Duties include, but are not limited to: Incumbent has advanced knowledge of complex and non-standard treatment and exam procedures and techniques. The cardiac sonographer must use independent judgment in applying knowledge of clinical cardiology and ultrasound, and Doppler principles. The sonographer must use problem-solving skills to optimize the evaluation and adjust the exam to ensure that it is comprehensive and accurate. The sonographer records and does preliminary interpretation of the exam and presents information and or possible diagnosis to the interpreting physician. Failure to integrate such data may lead to inaccurate exam and erroneous clinical interpretation. The incumbent performs real-time 3D, 2D, M-Mode, continuous and pulse wave, color, and tissue Doppler exams. Performs transthoracic examinations and stress echocardiograms with and without pharmaceuticals. The incumbent will include 3D imaging in all studies with the exception of studies lacking appropriate image quality to obtain suitable data. Appropriately notifies the Attending physician with preliminary echocardiograph results that may need immediate interpretation and intervention. He/she receives patients, explains the procedure and performs the appropriate complete exam. The incumbent independently sets, calibrates, and operates the ultrasound equipment. The incumbent performs routine maintenance on all Echo Lab equipment at intervals recommended by the manufacturer. Incumbent shares responsibility for coordinating emergency and preventive maintenance of the lab equipment. He/she maintains cleanliness of the work environment between studies and at the end of the work day. The incumbent provides training for Cardiology Fellows in performing studies and preliminary interpretation of echo exams. Incumbent teaches echo-Doppler principles and procedures, theory of operations and theory of interpretation of results to trainee echocardiographic technicians, nursing students, nurses, medical students, residents and fellows (especially cardiology fellows). Incumbent responds to emergency requests for echo-Doppler studies within 30 minutes during normal working hours. This includes requests from any hospital ward to bring the echo machine to the patient's bedside if needed for the performance of an echo-Doppler examination. In doubtful cases the technician will check the appropriateness of such emergency requests with a cardiology fellow or cardiology attending. Incumbent maintains skills in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and actively assists in CPR should the need arise. Incumbent attends regional and national professional meetings at the request/approval of the Echocardiography Lab Medical Director and/or Cardiology Nurse Manager to keep current on new technical and practical developments in the echo-Doppler field. Incumbent evaluates new products and equipment and makes recommendations concerning developments which would improve operations in the Echo Lab. The incumbent will start intravenous access on patients and perform saline contrast studies and cavity enhancing contrast studies with the assistance of the cardiology nurse or fellow upon request/order by a physician. The incumbent will assist the physicians involved in performing transesophageal echocardiographic (TEE) examinations. The incumbent may also assist with monitoring the patient during a TEE study by monitoring patient's blood pressure, heart rate and rhythm, and O2 saturation. The technician also performs suctioning of the patient if necessary. Incumbent has knowledge of JCAHO and other regulatory requirements and actively participates in maintaining compliance or initiating new protocols to meet TJC requirements. Work Schedule: Monday - Friday, 8:00a.m. - 4:30p.m. (work schedule may be adjusted to meet the needs of the service). Telework: Not Available Virtual: This is not a virtual position. Functional Statement #: 000000 Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Authorized Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized Financial Disclosure Report: Not required"]
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Providing Health Care for Veterans: The Veterans Health Administration is America’s largest integrated health care system, providing care at 1,255 health care facilities, including 170 medical centers and 1,074 outpatient sites of care of varying complexity (VHA outpatient clinics), serving 9 million enrolled Veterans each year.