Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration RN - Mental Health (Unit 520) in Palo Alto, California

Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration
3 vacancies in the following location:
  • Palo Alto, CA
Work Schedule is Full Time - Excepted Service Permanent

Opened Thursday 10/13/2016 (13 day(s) ago)

** Closes Wednesday 10/26/2016 (0 day(s) away)

Job Overview

Vacancy Identification Number: 1824269

OUR MISSION: To fulfill President Lincoln's promise – "To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan" – by serving and honoring the men and women who are America's Veterans. How would you like to become a part of a team providing compassionate care to Veterans?

The VA Palo Alto Health Care System (VAPAHCS) consists of three inpatient facilities located at Palo Alto, Menlo Park, and Livermore, plus seven outpatient clinics in San Jose, Fremont, Capitola, Monterey, Stockton, Modesto, and Sonora. These facilities provide some of the world's finest medical care and cutting-edge technology.

VAPAHCS is a teaching hospital with an affiliation with the Stanford University School of Medicine which provides a rich academic environment including medical training for physicians in virtually all specialties and subspecialties. Our Health Care System operates over 800 beds, including three nursing homes and a 100-bedhomeless domiciliary - all to serve more than 67,000 enrolled Veterans.

You can learn more about VAPAHCS by visiting:

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.

NOTE: Declining to be interviewed, failure to respond/accept interview attempts, or failure to report for a scheduled interview will be considered as a declination for further consideration for employment against this vacancy.


Work Schedule: 1st Shift 7:30am to 4:00pm OR2nd Shift 3:30am to 12:00am. NOTE: Shifts may vary depending on patient care needs.


The Mental Health RN is a direct care provider whose scope of practice includes providing comprehensive nursing care for patients in Mental Health Programs within the VA Palo Alto Health Care System on the Inpatient Acute Psychiatry Units.

The major duties and responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Working with a multidisciplinary team that oversees and addresses medical and psychiatric issues presented by patients. He/she provides direct nursing care to patients with psychiatric conditions.

  • Perform basic physical, psychological and social assessments as well as identify and prioritize care needs.

  • Providing oversight and monitoring of patients' compliance with the patient safe medication management program.

  • Providing education to patients and families and facilitates a broad spectrum of health and life skills related classes.

  • Provide preventive health screening, immunizations, medical/physical and psychosocial assessments and medication administration.

Travel Required
  • Not Required
Relocation Authorized
  • No
Job Requirements
Key Requirements
  • Must pass pre-employment examination.
  • Designated and/or Random Drug Testing required.
  • Background and/or Security Investigation required.
  • Must be proficient in written and spoken English.
  • Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959.


  • U.S. citizenship. Non-citizens may be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Policy.

  • Graduate of a school of professional nursing approved by the appropriate State agency, and accredited by the National League of Nursing Accreditation Commission (NLNAC) which changed to the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN; ) or The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE; ) at the time the program was completed; ORthe completion of coursework equivalent to a nursing degree in a MSN Bridge Program that qualifies for professional nursing registration constitutes the completion of an approved course of study of professional nursing. In cases of graduates of foreign schools of professional nursing, possession of current, full, active and unrestricted registration will meet the requirement of graduation from an approved school of professional nursing.

  • Current, full, active, and unrestricted registration (i.e., licensure) as a graduate professional nurse in a State, Territory, or Commonwealth (i.e., Puerto Rico) of the U.S. or the District of Columbia. (Note: Provide your RN registered license number on your application.)

The following criteria must be met in determining the grade assignment of candidates, and if appropriate, the level within a grade:

  • Nurse I Level I - An Associate Degree (ADN) or Diploma in Nursing, with no additional nursing practice/experience required.

  • Nurse I Level II - An ADN or Diploma in Nursing and approximately 1 year of nursing practice/experience; OR an ADN or Diploma in Nursing and a bachelor's degree in a related field with no additional nursing practice/experience; OR a Bachelor's of Science in Nursing (BSN) with no additional nursing practice/experience.

  • Nurse I Level III - An ADN or Diploma in Nursing and approximately 2-3 years of nursing practice/experience; OR an ADN or Diploma in Nursing and a Bachelor's degree in a related field and approximately 1-2 years of nursing practice/experience; OR a BSN with approximately 1-2 years of nursing practice/experience; ORa Master's degree in nursing (MSN) or related field with a BSN and no additional nursing practice/experience.

  • Nurse II - A BSN with approximately 2-3 years of nursing practice/experience; OR ADN or Diploma in Nursing and a Bachelor's degree in a related field and approximately 2-3 year's of nursing practice/experience; OR a Master's degree in nursing or related field with a BSN and approximately 1-2 year's of nursing practice/experience; ORa Doctoral degree in nursing or meets basic requirements for appointment and has doctoral degree in a related field with no additional nursing practice/experience required.

  • Nurse III - Master's degree in nursing or related field with BSN and approximately 2-3 year's of nursing practice/experience; OR a Doctoral degree in nursing or related field and approximately 2-3 year's of nursing practice/experience.

References:VA Handbook 5005/72, Part II, Appendix G6 Nurse Qualification Standard, dated March 17, 2009,

Business Necessity:

  • One (1) year of full-time experience as a licensed professional nurse.

Preferred Criteria:

  • Current BLS provider card issued by American Heart Association (AHA) or Military Training Network (MTN).

  • RN practice experience in an area of responsibility with progressive oversight and accountability, providing comprehensive nursing care for patients in a Mental Health/Psychiatric setting.

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.

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.

Drug Testing:All applicants tentatively selected for VA employment in a drug 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 the VA. In addition, any offer of employment will be rescinded with a verified positive drug test. VA employees in drug testing designated positions are also subject to post appointment random drug testing.

Physical Requirements:This position requires heavy lifting, 45 pounds heavy carrying, 45 pounds straight pulling (2 hours); reaching above shoulder; use of fingers; both hands required; walking & standing 8 hours - intermittently; repeated bending; both legs required; ability for rapid mental& muscular coordination simultaneously; near vision correctable at 13" to 16" to Jaeger 1 to 4; far vision correctable in one eye to 20/20 and to 20/40 in the other; depth perception; ability to distinguish shades of colors; hearing (aide permitted). Transferring patients and objects may be required. The incumbent may be exposed to infected patients and contaminated materials and may be required to don protective clothing in isolation situations or operative/invasive procedures. The incumbent may occasionally be exposed to patients who are combative secondary to delirium, dementia, or psychiatric disorders. The incumbent must be a mature, flexible, sensible individual capable of working effectively in stressful situations, able to shift priorities based on patient needs.

Security Clearance

Public Trust - Background Investigation

Additional Information
What To Expect Next

After we receive application packages (including all required documents) and the vacancy announcement closes, we will review applications to ensure qualification and eligibility requirements are met. During our review, if your résumé and application package do not support your questionnaire answers, we will adjust your rating accordingly. After the review is complete, a referral certificate(s) is issued and applicants will be notified of their status by email (if provided); otherwise, applicants will receive a notification letter via the U.S. Postal Service. Referred applicants will be notified as such and may be contacted directly by the hiring office for an interview. All referred applicants receive a final notification once a selection decision has been made.

You may check the status of your application at any time by logging into your USAJOBS account and clicking on "Application Status." For a more detailed update of your status, click on "more information." Information regarding applicant notification points can be found in the USAJobs Resource Center.


VA offers a comprehensive benefits package. This link provides is an overview of the benefits currently offered:

Annual leave shall accrue for full-time Nurses, and Nurse Anesthetists at the rate of 8 hours for each full biweekly pay period.

Other Information

It is the policy of the VA to not deny employment to those that have faced financial hardships or periods of unemployment.

This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies.

This position is in the Excepted Service and does not confer competitive status.

Salary Range: $93,425.00 to $156,084.00 / Per Year

Series & Grade: VN-0610-00/00

Supervisory Status: No

Who May Apply: United States Citizens

Control Number: 453232700

Job Announcement Number: VK-16-FO-1824269-BU