The Dental Assistant performs a wide range of intra-oral dental procedures associated with various phases of restorative, prosthetic, periodontal, endodontic, oral surgery, implant placement and restoration procedures and provides chairside assistance fully anticipating the dentist's needs for all instruments, materials, and services using four-handed techniques. Sets up operatory and/or surgery suite for planned dental procedure and cleans dental unit for timely turnover. Basic Requirements: a. Citizenship. Citizen of the United States. (Non-citizens may be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified candidates in accordance with chapter 3, section A, paragraph 3g, this part.) b. Experience and Education (1) Experience. Six months experience that demonstrates the applicant's ability to perform the work, or provides familiarity with the work. OR, (2) Education. Successful completion of a 1-year dental assistant program accredited by the American Dental Association's Commission on [Dental] Accreditation [(CODA)]. (3) Experience/Education Combination. Equivalent combinations of experience and education are qualifying. c. Certification. Public Law 97-35 requires that persons who administer radiologic procedures meet the credentialing standards in 42 CFR Part 75. Essentially, 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. (1) Provisions for Certification of Radiologic Competence (a) Successful completion of the Dental Radiation Health and Safety Examination administered by the Dental Assisting National Board, Inc.; OR, [(b)] Successful completion of the Principles and Practice of Dental Radiology and Radiographic Safety courses and examinations developed by the Assistant Under Secretary for Health for Dentistry. OR, (c) Successful completion of a radiation health and safety program or examination approved by a state board of dentistry or the Department of Defense (DoD). 2) Non-certified applicants who otherwise meet the eligibility requirements for certification of radiologic competence may be given a temporary appointment as a graduate dental assistant under the authority of 38 U.S.C. § 7405 (a) (1) (D). Failure to obtain certification during that period is justification for termination of the temporary appointment. This [will result in removal from the GS-681 series and] may result in termination of employment. (3) Certification in basic life support methods is highly desirable. (4) Certification by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB). The American Dental Association (ADA) recognizes DANB as the national certification for Dental Assistants. DANB certification is not required, but highly desirable for the appointment of Dental Assistants up to and including the full performance level, and is required for all positions above the full performance level.] (5) Loss of Credential. An employee in this occupation who fails to obtain licensure/certification/registration within the required time frame, or who fails to maintain the required licensure/certification/registration must be removed from the occupation, which may also result in termination of employment. d. Grandfathering Provision. All persons employed in VHA in this occupation on the effective date of this qualification standard are considered to have met all qualification requirements for the title, series and grade held, including certification [(for positions above the full performance level)] that are part of the basic requirements of the occupation. For employees who do not meet all the basic requirements required in this standard, but who met the qualifications applicable to the position at the time they were appointed to it, the following provisions apply: (1) Such employees may be reassigned, promoted up to and including the full performance (journey) level, or [changed to lower grade] within the occupation, but may not be promoted beyond the journey level or placed in supervisory or managerial positions. Such employees MUST meet the certification requirement before they can be promoted to those higher grade levels. (2) Employees who are appointed on a temporary basis prior to the effective date of the qualification standard may not have their temporary appointment extended or be reappointed, on a temporary or permanent basis, until they fully meet the basic requirements of the standard. (3) Employees initially grandfathered into this occupation, who subsequently obtain additional education and/or licensure/certification/registration that meet all the basic requirements of this qualification standard must maintain the required credentials as a condition of employment in the occupation. (4) If an employee who was retained under this provision leaves [the] occupation, the employee loses protected status and must meet the full VA qualification standard requirements in effect at the time of reentry to the occupation. Physical Requirements. See VA Directive and Handbook 5019. English Language Proficiency. Dental assistants 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: Creditable Experience (a) Knowledge of Current Professional Dental Assistant Practices. To be creditable, the experience must have required the use of knowledge, skills, abilities [(KSAs)], and other characteristics (also referred to as "core competencies") associated with current professional dental assisting practice. Evidence of such experience includes graduation from a certified dental assisting training program, experience in private practice, VHA, Department of Defense (DoD), or other federal, state, community or charitable health care agency. (b) Quality of Experience. Experience is only creditable after the training program certifies that the individual has completed all required courses, an internship if it is part of the program, and graduated with passing grades. (c) Part-Time Experience. Part-time experience as a dental assistant is credited according to its relationship to full-time workweek. For example, a dental assistant would receive 1 week of full-time credit for each 2 weeks of half-time work. GS-6 Staff Dental Assistant (Full Performance Level) (a) Experience. At least 1 year of experience equivalent to the next lower grade level that demonstrates the core competencies described at that level. In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the following] technical KSAs: (b) Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities 1. Ability to identify normal oral anatomy. 2. Advanced knowledge of instruments, materials, and standardized dental procedures used in all phases of restorative, surgical, endodontic and periodontal care and procedures. 3. Ability to monitor and perform basic interpretation of vital signs. 4. Ability to independently provide procedure-specific patient education and appropriate referral of patient concerns to treating dentist. 5. Ability to capture standard and special dental images of good diagnostic quality in traditional or digital formats. 6. Ability to perform maintenance on dental equipment used for routine and specialty dentistry. 7. Ability to enter and retrieve data utilizing electronic dental records. 8. Ability to perform dental assistant-appropriate laboratory procedures] References: VA Handbook 5005/46, Part 2, Appendix GS-36. The full performance level of this vacancy is at the GS-6 level. Physical Requirements: Work is sedentary but also demands standing, walking, bending, twisting, and carrying light items. ["The Dental Assistant passes instruments safely, accurately, and efficiently. Keeps operative field clear of debris and retracts oral tissues effectively and comfortably. Prepares dental medicaments and impression materials per manufacturer's instructions. Accomplishes all intra-operative procedures within standard infection control protocols. Dental Imaging: Operates dental X-ray equipment for intra- and extra- oral radiographs. Images are of diagnostic quality and accurately oriented and exposed. Dental imaging safety techniques are utilized, and retakes are minimized. Imaging requests are accomplished within the desired time frame. Modifies settings to achieve the images as requested by the provider. Records dental images accurately and efficiently in patient's records. Infection Control and Equipment Sterilization: Demonstrates proper infection control procedures in setting up and cleaning operatories. Disinfects oral appliances to prevent cross contamination. Debrides and decontaminates instruments, materials and equipment. Prepares instruments in a manner that does not delay clinical care. Work Schedule: Monday through Friday: 8 am to 4: 30 pm Telework: Not Available Virtual: This is not a virtual position. Functional Statement: Dental Assistant Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized Financial Disclosure Report: Not required"]
About Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration
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.