Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration Medical Records Technician-Coder in Des Moines, Iowa

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Duties
Summary

This position is located in the Health Information Management (HIM) section at the VA Central Iowa Health Care Systems. The Medical Records Technician (Coder) is responsible for abstracting medical record data and assigning codes using current clinical classification systems appropriate for the type of care provided.

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Responsibilities

Duties include but are not limited to:

  • Assigns codes to documented patient care encounters (inpatient or outpatient) covering the full range of health care services provided by the VA Medical Center.
  • Applies advanced knowledge of medical terminology, anatomy & physiology, disease processes, treatment modalities, diagnostic tests, medications, procedures as well as the principles and practices of health services and the organizational structure to ensure proper code selection.
  • Selects and assigns codes from the current version of several coding systems to include current versions of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD), Current Procedural Terminology (CPT), and/or Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS).
  • Adheres to accepted coding practices, guidelines and conventions when choosing the most appropriate diagnosis, operation, procedure, ancillary, or Evaluation and Management code to ensure ethical, accurate, and complete coding.
  • Applies codes based on guidelines specific to certain diagnoses, procedures, and other criteria (in inpatient and outpatient settings) used to classify patients under the Veterans Equitable Resource Allocation (VERA) program that categorizes all VA patients into specific classes representing their clinical conditions and resource needs.
  • Monitors ever-changing regulatory and policy requirements affecting coded information for the full spectrum of services provided by the VA Medical Center.
  • Performs a comprehensive review of the patient health record to abstract medical, surgical, ancillary, demographic, social, and administrative data to ensure complete data capture. Patient health records may be paper or electronic.
  • Assists facility staff with documentation requirements to completely and accurately reflect the patient care provided; provides technical support in the areas of regulations and policy, coding requirements, resident supervision, reimbursement, workload, accepted nomenclature, and proper sequencing.
  • Directly consults with the professional staff for clarification of conflicting or ambiguous clinical data.
  • Reports incorrect documentation or codes in the electronic patient health record.
  • Corrects any identified data errors or inconsistencies in a timely manner to ensure acceptance in the national VA database within established timelines. Work Schedule: Monday - Friday, 8:00 am - 4:30 pm Fi*nancial Disclosure Report:* Not required Telework: Available
Travel Required

Not required

Supervisory status

No

Promotion Potential

8

  • #### Job family (Series)

0675 Medical Records Technician

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  • Requirements

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Requirements
Conditions of Employment
  • You must be a U.S. Citizen to apply for this job
  • Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959
  • You may be required to serve a probationary period
  • Subject to a background/security investigation
  • Must be proficient in written and spoken English
  • Selected applicants will be required to complete an online onboarding process
Qualifications

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: MRTs must be proficient in spoken and written English as required by 38 U.S.C. 7402(d), and 7407(d). * Experience and Education: (1) Experience. One year of experience that indicates knowledge of medical terminology and general understanding of the health record. Six months of the required one year of experience must have provided the knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) needed to perform MRT work. OR, (2) Education. Two years above high school with a minimum of 12 semester hours directly related to MRT work (e.g., courses in medical terminology, anatomy & physiology, and introduction to health records). OR, (3) Experience/Education Combination. Equivalent combinations of experience and education are qualifying. The following educational/training substitutions are appropriate for combining education and experience: (a) Six months of experience that indicates knowledge of medical terminology and general understanding of the health record and one year above high school with a minimum of 6 semester hours of health information technology courses. (b) Successful completion of a course for medical technicians, hospital corpsmen, medical service specialists, or hospital training obtained in a training program given by the Armed Forces or the U.S. Maritime Service under close medical and professional supervision may be substituted on a month-for-month basis for up to six months of experience provided the training program included courses in anatomy, physiology, and medical record techniques and procedures. Also requires six additional months of experience that indicates knowledge of medical terminology and general understanding of the health record.

Grade Determinations: (1) GS-4 MRT (Coder) Entry Level (a) Experience or Education. None beyond basic requirements. (b) Assignment. Employees at this level serve as entry level MRT coders and receive close supervision from more experienced MRT Coders.

(2) GS-5 MRT (Coder) Developmental Level 1 (a) Experience. One year of experience equivalent to the next lower grade level or successful completion of four years of education above high school from an accredited college or university with a minimum of 24 semester hours in health information technology. (b) Demonstrated KSAs. In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs: 1. Ability to utilize health information technology and various office software products utilized in MRT coder positions (e.g., the electronic health record, coding and abstracting software, etc.); 2. Knowledge of the Joint Commission requirements, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), and/or health record documentation guidelines; and 3. Ability to manage priorities and coordinate work in order to complete duties within required timeframes and ability to follow-up on pending issues.

(3) GS-6 MRT (Coder) Developmental Level 2 (a) Experience. One year of experience equivalent to the next lower level. (b) Demonstrated KSAs. In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs: 1. Ability to navigate through health records to find needed information; 2. Skill in interpreting and adapting health information guidelines that are not completely applicable to the work or have gaps in specificity, and ability to use judgment in completing assignments with incomplete or inadequate guidelines; 3. Ability to apply laws and regulations on the confidentiality of health information (e.g., Privacy Act, Freedom of Information Act, and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)); and 4. Comprehensive knowledge of classification systems, such as current versions of International Classification of Diseases (ICD), Current Procedural Technology (CPT) and Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS), and skill in applying said classifications based on health record documentation.

(4) GS-7 MRT(Coder) Developmental Level 3 (a) Experience. One year of experience equivalent to the next lower grade level. (b) Demonstrated KSAs. In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs: 1. Skill in applying current coding classifications to a variety of specialty care areas to accurately reflect service and care provided based on documentation in the health record; 2. Ability to communicate with clinical staff for specific coding and documentation issues such as recording inpatient and/or outpatient diagnoses and procedures, the correct sequencing of diagnoses and/or procedures, and the relationship between health care documentation and code assignment; 3. Ability to research and solve coding and documentation related issues; and 4. Skill in reviewing and correcting system or processing errors and ensuring all assigned work is complete.

(5) GS-8 MRT (Coder) Full Performance Level (a) Experience. One year of experience equivalent to the next lower grade level. (b) Demonstrated KSAs. In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs: 1. Ability to analyze the medical record to identify all pertinent diagnoses and procedures for coding, and to evaluate the adequacy of the documentation. This includes the ability to read and understand the content of the medical record, the terminology, the significance of the comments, and the disease process/pathophysiology of the patient; 2. Ability to accurately perform the full scope of outpatient coding, including ambulatory surgical cases, diagnostic studies and procedures, and outpatient encounters, and/or inpatient coding, including inpatient discharges, surgical cases, diagnostic studies and procedures, and inpatient professional fees; and 3. Skill in interpreting and adapting health information guidelines and ability to use judgment in completing assignments using incomplete or inadequate guidelines. (c) Assignment. This is considered to be the full performance level for this assignment. Coders at this level perform either inpatient or outpatient coding duties, or a combination of inpatient and outpatient coding duties. Inpatient duties consist of the performance of a comprehensive review of documentation within the health record to assign ICD codes for diagnosis, complications, co-morbid conditions, surgery, and procedures. Outpatient duties consist of the performance of a comprehensive review of documentation within the health record to accurately assign ICD codes for diagnosis and complications, and CPT codes for surgeries, procedures and evaluation, and management services. Directly consults with the professional staff for clarification of conflicting, incomplete or ambiguous clinical data in the health record. May be required to abstract and sequence codes into encoder software to obtain correct diagnosis-related group (DRG). Enters and corrects information that has been rejected, when necessary. Corrects any identified data errors or inconsistencies.

References: VA Handbook 5005, Part II, Appendix G35, Medical Record Technician Qualification Standard, GS-675, available in the local Human Resources Office.

The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-08. The actual grade at which an applicant may be selected for this vacancy is in the range of GS-04 to GS-08.

Physical Requirements:The work is primarily sedentary, light lifting (under 15 pounds); light carrying (under 15 pounds); use of fingers, both hands; may require some walking and standing; far vision correctable in one eye to 20/20 and to 20/40 in the other, depth perception; hearing (aid permitted).

Education

IMPORTANT:A transcript must be submitted with your application if you are basing all or part of your qualifications on education.

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: http://ope.ed.gov/accreditation/. 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. For further information, visit: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ous/international/usnei/us/edlite-visitus-forrecog.html.

Additional information

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

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

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

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.

Veterans and Transitioning Service Members: Please visit the VA for Vets site for career-search tools for Veterans seeking employment at VA, career development services for our existing Veterans, and coaching and reintegration support for military service members.

If you are unable to apply online view the following link for information regarding an Alternate Application.

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How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE.Your application, résumé, C.V., and/or supporting documentation will be verified. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect consideration for employment.

NOTE: The Professional Standards Board (a peer-review group) will review the selected candidate's education and experience and recommend the grade and salary at which the candidate will be placed. For internal selectees eligible for promotion, the board will determine grade and HR will determine step in accordance with policy.

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.

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Background checks and security clearance
Security clearance

Other

Drug test required

No

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Required Documents

To apply for this position, you must provide a complete Application Package which includes:

  • Resume VA Form 10-2850c Application for Associated Health Occupations can be found at: http://www.va.gov/vaforms/searchaction.asp?FormNo=2850&tkey;=&Action;=Search.

The following documents are accepted, and may be required if applicable to your eligibility and/or qualifications for this position. Please use this checklist to ensure you have included all documents required for your application, such as a copy of your transcript (if using education to qualify), SF-50's, documentation to support Veterans Preference or ICTAP/CTAP documentation (for displaced Federal employees).

  • Cover Letter
  • DD-214
  • OF-306
  • Other
  • Other Veterans Document
  • Resume
  • SF-15
  • SF-50
  • Transcript

Veterans' Preference: When applying for Federal Jobs, eligible Veterans should claim preference for 5pt (TP), 10pt (CP/CPS/XP), or for Sole Survivor Preference (SSP) in the questionnaire. You must provide a legible copy of your DD214(s) which shows dates and character of service (honorable, general, etc.). If you are currently serving on active duty and expect to be released or discharged within 120 days you must submit documentation related to your active duty service which reflects the dates of service, character of service (honorable, general, etc.), and dates of impending separation. Additionally, disabled veterans and others eligible for 10-point preference (such as widows or mothers of eligible Veterans) must also submit an SF-15 "Application for 10 Point Veteran Preference" with required proof as stated on the form. Documentation is required to award preference. For more information on Veterans' Preference, please visit http://www.fedshirevets.gov/job/vetpref/index.aspx.

If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

  • Benefits

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Benefits

A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. Learn more about federal benefits.

Review our benefits

Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time, or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.

  • How to Apply

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How to Apply

All applicants are encouraged to apply online. To apply for this position, you must complete the full questionnaire and submit the documentation specified in the Required Documents section below. The complete application package must be submitted by 11:59 PM (ET) on 12/07/2018 to receive consideration.

  1. To begin, click Apply Online to create a USAJOBS account or log in to your existing account. Follow the prompts to select your USA JOBS resume and/or other supporting documents and complete the occupational questionnaire.
  2. Click Submit My Answers to submit your application package.

NOTE: It is your responsibility to ensure your responses and appropriate documentation is submitted prior to the closing date.

To verify your application is complete, log into your USA JOBS account, https://my.usajobs.gov/Account/Login, select the Application Status link and then select the more information link for this position. The Details page will display the status of your application, the documentation received and processed, and any correspondence the agency has sent related to this application. Your uploaded documents may take several hours to clear the virus scan process. To return to an incomplete application, log into your USA JOBS account and click Update Application in the vacancy announcement. You must re-select your resume and/or other documents from your USA JOBS account or your application will be incomplete.

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Agency contact information
VHACIH Recruitment
Phone

515-699-5809

Email

vhacihrecruitment2@va.gov

Address

VA Central Iowa Health Care System 3600 30th St Des Moines, IA 50310 US

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Next steps

Once your online application is submitted you will receive a confirmation notification by email. 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. After the review is complete, a referral certificate(s) is issued and applicants will be notified of their status by email. 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 USA Jobs account and clicking on Applications. Information regarding your application status can be found in the USAJobs Help Center.

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  • Fair & Transparent
Fair & Transparent

The Federal hiring process is setup to be fair and transparent. Please read the following guidance.

Equal Employment Opportunity Policy

The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.

  • Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) for federal employees & job applicants

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Reasonable Accommodation Policy

Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application process should follow the instructions in the job opportunity announcement. For any part of the remaining hiring process, applicants should contact the hiring agency directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

A reasonable accommodation is any change to a job, the work environment, or the way things are usually done that enables an individual with a disability to apply for a job, perform job duties or receive equal access to job benefits.

Under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodations when:

  • An applicant with a disability needs an accommodation to have an equal opportunity to apply for a job.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to perform the essential job duties or to gain access to the workplace.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to receive equal access to benefits, such as details, training, and office-sponsored events.

You can request a reasonable accommodation at any time during the application or hiring process or while on the job. Requests are considered on a case-by-case basis.

Learn more about disability employment and reasonable accommodations or how to contact an agency.

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Legal and regulatory guidance
  • Financial suitability
  • Social security number request
  • Privacy Act
  • Signature and false statements
  • Selective Service
  • New employee probationary period

This job originated on www.usajobs.gov. For the full announcement and to apply, visit www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/507175600. Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at www.usajobs.gov will be considered.

Open & closing dates: 08/06/2018 to 12/07/2018

Service: Excepted

Pay scale & grade: GS 4 - 8

Salary: $29,847 to $59,557 per year

Appointment type: Permanent

Work schedule: Full-Time