Licensed Mental Health Counselor (OPMH)

Veterans Health Administration - Department of Veterans Affairs

To qualify for this position, applicants must meet all requirements by the closing date of this announcement. 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. English Language Proficiency: LPMHCs must be proficient in spoken and written English in accordance with VA Handbook 5005. Education: Hold a master’s degree in mental health counseling, or a related field, from a program accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). Examples of related mental health counseling fields include, but are not limited to, Addiction Counseling; Community Counseling; Gerontology Counseling; Marital, Couple, and Family Counseling; and Marriage and Family Therapy. A doctoral degree in mental health counseling may not be substituted for the master’s degree in mental health counseling. Verification of the degree can be made by going to the CACREP website to verify if the degree meets the accreditation standards for a master of mental health counseling, or a related field. Licensure: Persons hired or reassigned to LPMHC positions in the GS-0101 series in VHA must hold a full, current, and unrestricted license to independently practice as a Licensed Professional Mental Health Counselor, which includes diagnosis and treatment. Exception. VHA may waive the licensure requirement for persons who are otherwise qualified, pending completion of state prerequisites for licensure. This exception only applies up to the full performance level. For grade levels at or above the full performance level, the candidate must be licensed. The appointing official may waive the requirement of licensure for a period not to exceed 3 years for a LPMHC that provides care under the clinical supervision of a licensed LPMHC who is at or above the full performance level. This exception only applies at the entry level (GS-9). For grade levels at or above the full performance level, the candidate must be licensed. The Human Resources Office will provide the unlicensed LPMHC in writing the requirement to obtain licensure, the date by which the license must be acquired, and the consequences for not becoming licensed by the deadline. The written notice must be provided prior to the entrance on duty date. Grade Determinations: GS-9 Licensed Professional Mental Health Counselor (LPMHC) (Entry Level) Experience, Education, and Licensure: The entry level is used for LPMHCs with less than one year of post-master’s degree experience or for LPMHCs who are graduates, not yet licensed at the independent practice level. In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the KSAs for the GS-9 listed below. Assignments: Individuals assigned as GS-9 LPMHCs are considered to be at the entry level and are closely supervised, including co-signatures where required, as they are not functioning at the full performance level. They are typically assigned to VHA areas that do not require specialized knowledge or experience. Since they are not practicing at an independent level, they should not be assigned to areas where independent practice is required, such as in a CBOC, unless there is a licensed LPMHC in the area who can provide supervision for practice. Under supervision, LPMHCs at this level provide professional mental health counseling services. Licensed Professional Mental Health Counselor GS-9 KSAs 1. Ability to engage in information gathering, problem identification, diagnosis, treatment planning, implementation, evaluation and follow-up. 2. Knowledge of current Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) of Mental Disorders in formulation of treatment goals and application of appropriate clinical interventions using professional counseling practices. 3. Basic knowledge of professional counseling practice with emphasis on human development principles through cognitive, affective, behavioral or systemic interventions, and strategies that address high risk behaviors, wellness, personal growth, and career development across the life span. 4. Ability to use a wide variety of individual, group, or family counseling interventions; demonstrates sensitivity to diversity and possesses multicultural counseling skills. 5. Ability to serve on an interdisciplinary team with focus on the intrapersonal, interpersonal, and relational functioning of individuals, groups and families and on the counseling approaches, strategies, and techniques that will best help patients function effectively. 6. Basic skill in the use of computer software applications for drafting documents, data management, maintaining accurate, timely and thorough clinical documentation and delivery of services, such as Telehealth. 7. Ability to learn and utilize software programs in use by VHA. 8. Knowledge and understanding of existing relevant statutes, case laws, ethical codes, and regulations affecting professional practice of counseling. 9. Ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing, with people from varied backgrounds. GS-11 Licensed Professional Mental Health Counselor (LPMHC) (Full Performance Level) Experience, Education, and Licensure: In addition to the basic requirements, candidates must have at least 1 year of post-master’s degree mental health counseling experience; OR In addition to the basic requirements, a doctoral degree in mental health counseling, or a related field may be substituted for the required 1 year of professional mental health counseling experience. Assignments. This is the full performance level for LPMHCs. At this level they are licensed to independently practice professional counseling and to provide mental health services within the knowledge, theory, and training foundations of professional counseling. They may be assigned to any mental health VHA area, consulting with peers and supervisors as appropriate. LPMHCs may be involved in program evaluation and/or research activities. Licensed Professional Mental Health Counselor GS-11 KSAs 1. Ability to make professional evaluations, decisions, and recommendation for treatment planning and implementation. 2. Advanced knowledge and mastery of the fundamentals of the counseling process which includes defining patient/family problems and maintaining an effective counseling relationship. 3. Ability to provide subject matter consultation to colleagues and students on the counseling process within various specialty areas, build on the foundation of competence through regular meetings and discussions to explain assignments, review progress of cases and confer about the counseling perspectives and orientation. 4. Ability to provide complex crisis intervention and stabilization to patients who are in psychological distress. Requires independent judgement and skill. 5. Ability to establish goals/treatment through a collaborative process with the patient utilizing advanced counseling skills, including evidenced based practices and screening/assessment. 6. Ability to use a wide variety of individual, group, or familial counseling interventions; demonstrates sensitivity to diversity and possesses multicultural counseling skills. 7. Ability to fully utilize the current DSM in making diagnoses and formulation of treatment goals and application of appropriate clinical intervention using professional counseling practices. 8. Ability to develop and deliver psycho-education groups that include life skills, family support, and community integration. Preferred Experience: Full Independent License References: VA Handbook 5005/53, Part II, Appendix G43, LICENSED PROFESSIONAL MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELOR QUALIFICATION STANDARD, dated April 3, 2018. This can be found in the local Human Resources Office. The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-11.
The Marion VA Medical Center is seeking a full time Licensed Professional Mental Health Counselor (OPMH) to join Behavioral Medicine Service at each of the following locations: Mayfield Community Based Outpatient Clinic, Mayfield, KY Effingham Community Based Outpatient Clinic, Effingham, IL This is an Open Continuous Announcement and applicants will be pulled December 23, 2022, and if needed each week following.