The Dental Hygienist position is primarily located at the Central Texas Veterans Health Care System (CTVHCS) in Waco, Texas within Dental Service. 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. Education. Applicants must possess an Associate degree or higher from an accredited dental hygiene program. The degree must have been obtained from an institution whose accreditation was in place for the year in which the course of study was completed. Approved programs are: (1) Dental hygiene programs accredited by the American Dental Association's Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA). (2) [Education completed outside of the United States must be considered at least equivalent to that gained in CODA accredited United States programs and would enable the candidate to sit for the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination, which is administered by the Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations.] Licensure. Applicants must be currently licensed to practice as a dental hygienist with a full, current and unrestricted license in a State, Territory or Commonwealth of the United States, or the District of Columbia. Certification. P.L. 97-35, Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act Of 1981, requires persons who administer radiologic procedures meet the credentialing standards in 42 C.F.R. Part 75, Standards for the Accreditation of Educational Programs for and the Credentialing of Radiologic Personnel. To meet this requirement, they must have successfully completed an educational program that meets or exceeds the standards described in that regulation and is accredited by an organization recognized by the Department of Education and be certified as radiographers in their field. Accredited dental hygiene programs contain curriculum addressing radiologic procedures meets the requirement for certification as dental radiographers. Exceptions for Non-Certified Dental Hygienist. Non-certified applicants who otherwise meet the eligibility requirements for licensure, may be given a temporary appointment as a graduate dental hygienist under the authority of 38 U.S.C. § 7405(c)(2)(B), Temporary Full-Time Appointments, Part-Time Appointments and Without-Compensation Appointments for a Period Not to Exceed Two Years. Grandfathering Provision. 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). Foreign Education. To be creditable, education completed outside the U.S. must be deemed at least equivalent to that gained in a conventional U.S. program by a private organization specializing in the interpretation of foreign educational credentials. Physical Requirements. See VA Directive and Handbook 5019, Employee Occupational Health Service for requirements. English Language Proficiency. Dental hygienist candidates must be proficient in spoken and written English in accordance with 38 U.S.C. § 7403(f). Grade Determinations: Dental Hygienist, GS-05 Experience. None, beyond the basic requirements. Dental Hygienist, GS-06 Experience. At least one year of experience at the next lower grade level. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSAs). In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs: i. Knowledge of oral prophylactic, therapeutic, and preventive procedures for periodontal diseases, or inflammation, or on patients with other medical and/or dental problems. ii. Knowledge of dental methods and techniques used in performing intra and extra oral procedures. iii. Ability to use communication techniques to encourage and inform individuals and groups. Dental Hygienist, GS-07 Experience. At least one year of experience at the next lower grade level that demonstrates the clinical competencies described at that level. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities. In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs: i. Knowledge of oral pathology to include disease of the hard and soft tissues, disorders of tooth structure, developmental and congenital anomalies, salivary gland disorders, symptoms of infectious disorders, and appropriate protocols. ii. Practical knowledge of medical diseases, conditions, and chronic degenerative diseases as they relate to dental health and treatment. iii. Knowledge of radiographic exposure techniques to produce radiographs of high diagnostic quality. Dental Hygienist, GS-08 Experience. At least one year of experience at the next lower grade level that demonstrates the clinical competencies described at that level. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities. In addition to meeting the KSAs for the GS-07 level, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs: i. Knowledge of state-of-the-art preventive dentistry measures for patient instruction and training. ii. Knowledge of anatomy and physiology in order to interpret the examination request accurately; to understand the functioning and interrelationship of the various anatomical structures appearing on the radiographic image and the various stages of the examination to judge the acceptability of the radiograph for diagnostic use; and to present for viewing. iii. Knowledge of The Joint Commission (TJC), Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and related regulations and guidelines pertaining to dental matters. iv. Skill in providing individual and group oral health care instructions to inpatients, outpatients, Nursing Home Care Unit patients, etc. Dental Hygienist, GS-09 Experience. At least one year of experience at the next lower grade level that demonstrates the clinical competencies described at that level. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities. In addition to meeting the KSAs for the GS-8 level, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs: i. Knowledge of hygiene procedures to explain the process and indication, complications and expected treatment outcomes for each. ii. Knowledge of proper usage of dental radiography equipment, radiation safety, assessment of proper image capture and interpretation of films. iii. Knowledge to select appropriate available fluoride products and indications/limitations for safe and proper application. iv. Skill in detecting plaque and calculus, dental abnormalities/pathologies, assessing inflammation and providing safe instrumentation for each procedure. v. Skill in educating patients and caregivers on periodontal disease, wellness, health maintenance, oral hygiene practices, parafunctional habits, and effects of illness, addictions, medications and tobacco on the oral cavity. vi. Ability to assess the patient's medical, dental, anxiety/phobias, medications and comorbidities to administer safe patient care. vii. Ability to assess the impact of patient's medical and dental condition on maintaining oral health, recognize age-related changes in individual patients, adapt patient environment, and maximize patient's physical comfort. ["Duties may include but are not limited to: -Sets up operatory for planned dental procedures and cleans dental unit for timely turnover. -Handles instruments safely, accurately, and efficiently. -Assists with initial or recall exam by taking radiographs and performing full mouth probing. -Provides routine oral prophylactic care to include application of fluoride solutions. -Provides gross debridement, deep scaling, and curettage and root planning procedures. -Cleans dental prosthesis, fixed and removable.-Manages dental recall system, referring patients to the doctor for additional care when needed. -Applies desensitizing and sealant materials. -Makes impressions for fluoride carrier trays. Administers topical anesthetic agents and accomplishes all procedures within standard infection control protocols. -Provides patient education appropriate to the veteran's needs and oral condition and document in Computerized Patient Record System (CPRS). -Assists patients in scheduling appointments; assists in filling gaps in the schedule due to late cancellations and failed appointments. Work Schedule: Monday-Friday;Full time; 8:00a.m. to 4:30p.m. Telework: Not Available Virtual: This is not a virtual position. Functional Statement #: 000000 Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized Financial Disclosure Report: Not required"]
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.