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Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration Medical Records Technician - Cancer Registrar in Columbia, South Carolina


This position is located in the Medicine Service at the Columbia VA Health Care System. The Medical Records Technician Cancer Registrar serves as a Cancer Program Specialist in a large, complex, VA Medical Center with medical and surgical oncology services and a research program affiliated with a major medical school. The work of the position supports the care and treatment given to patients with malignant conditions.


Medical Records Technician Cancer Registrar is responsible for planning, organizing, actuating, and control of all activities in the Oncology Patient Registry Program. In this capacity, the Cancer Program Specialist coordinates all activities associated with the Cancer Program at this VA Healthcare System. Incumbent is responsible for providing advisory and technical service to administrative, medical, and ancillary professional staff as it relates to the integration of the Cancer Committee policy and procedures, the accreditation standards of the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer Program, the VA Oncology Program, and the National Cancer Institute's SEER Program. Incumbent has full program authority to administer the Tumor Registry program at this facility. Incumbent makes recommendations for program changes to the Cancer Committee, the Cancer Committee Chairperson, and the Cancer Liaison to the American College of Surgeons and to the Cancer Conference Chairperson. Incumbent is an integral part of the Cancer Program at this Medical Center. Other duties include, but are not limited to the following: Identifies required reportable diseases in this facility's patients through the use of the VISTA Oncology Program. Thoroughly searches the medical record to identify and code all information pertinent to the patient's diagnosis Codes stages of disease using American Joint Commission on Cancer's staging requirements. Analyzes the consistency of coding of registry data, cancer diagnosis, histology, treatment,(including surgical procedures, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, hormonal therapy and radiation therapy). Submits data monthly to the VA Central Cancer Registry, per directives, submits data to the American College of Surgeon's National Cancer Database annually, and submits data to the Connecticut Tumor Registry in accordance with the VHA Handbook 1605. Performs research and periodic statistical reports and prepares correspondence by retrieving and releasing data following a standardized approach that meets the requirements of the Privacy Act and Freedom of Information Act regulations. Organizes and maintains a data system which conforms to the standards of an Approved Cancer Program and meets the needs of the users of the registry data. Follow patients until their death, entering the progression of their disease into the computer program, using narrative and coding as required. Each patient abstract is updated as recurrences develop and annual follow-up is completed. The incumbent coordinates, oversees, and facilitates the Cancer Committee meetings to monitor compliance with ACoS standards to ensure certification of the Cancer Program. Develops and Monitors Quality Management and Improvement, Performance Projects and Special Studies to Enhance Cancer Patient Care and to meet Requirements of the Commission on Cancer. Initiates, conducts, and facilitates special projects, studies, and surveys which improve patient care and support the patient with cancer. Sets up plans to ensure the continuous review by professional staff to assure quality of services as required for an Approved Cancer Program. Performs other duties as assigned by management. Work Schedule: Monday - Friday, 8:00am to 4:30pm. Tour of duty subject to change based on agency needs.

Financial Disclosure Report: Not required


Conditions of Employment


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. Experience and Education: 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 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 six 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. Training 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. The position requires six additional

months of experience that indicates knowledge of medical terminology and general understanding of the health record.

(Applicants pending the completion of educational or certification/licensure requirements may be referred and tentatively

selected but may not be hired until all requirements are met.) Grandfathering Provision: All persons employed in VHA as a MRT (Cancer Registrar) on the effective date of this

qualification standard are considered to have met all qualification requirements for the title, series and grade held, including positive education that is part of the basic requirements of the occupation. For employees who do not meet all the basic requirements 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 (journeyman) level, or changed to lower grade within the occupation, but may not be promoted beyond the journeyman level or placed in supervisory or managerial positions.(2) MRTs (Cancer Registrar) 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) MRTs (Cancer Registrar) initially grandfathered into this occupation, who subsequently obtain additional education that meets all the basic requirements of this qualification standard must maintain the required credentials as a condition of employment in the occupation.(4) Employees who are retained as a MRT(Cancer Registrar) under this provision and subsequently leave the occupation, lose protected status and must meet the full VA qualification standard requirements in effect at the time of reentry as a MRT (Cancer Registrar). 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). Preferred Experience: Certified Tumor Registrar (CTR) with at least 3-5 years of experience. Grade Determinations: Creditable Experience

(1) Knowledge of Current Medical Record Technology. To be creditable, the candidate's experience must have demonstrated the use of knowledge, skills, and abilities associated with current health information or health record technology and/or cancer registry practice and may be paid or non-paid employment.

(2) Quality of Experience. Experience is only creditable if it is either directly related to the position to be filled or in a related field. Qualifying experience must also be equivalent to the next lower grade level. Experience satisfying this requirement must be active practice, which is paid/non-paid employment as a MRT in the parenthetical title as described in subparagraph 3b(2) below.

(3) Part-Time Experience. Part-time experience as a professional MRT is creditable according to its relationship to the full-time workweek. For example, a MRT would receive 1 week of full-time credit for each 2 weeks of half-time work. MRT (Cancer Registrar), GS-8 Full Performance

(1) Experience. One year of experience equivalent to the next lower grade level (GS-7).

(2) Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. In addition to the experience above, the candidate must demonstrate [all of] the following KSAs: Knowledge of professional registry operations[.] Knowledge of medical terminology, staging of cancer, and requirements of internal and external approving organizations[.] Knowledge of the cancer committee processes and procedures to improve patient care and verify compliance with ACoS and/or facility standards. Ability to serve as a subject matter expert on cancer programs for the medical center[.] Skill in utilizing electronic health records and cancer registry software. References: VA Handbook 5005/79, Part II, Appendix G35 - Medical Record Technician Qualification Standard. The full performance level of this vacancy is 8. Physical Requirements: Use of fingers; both hands required; near vision correctable to 13" to 16" to Jaeger 1 to 4; far vision correctable in one eye to 20/50 and to 20/100 in the other; ability to distinguish basic colors; hearing (aid permitted); mental and emotional stability required.


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: 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:

Additional Information

Receiving Service Credit or Earning Annual (Vacation) Leave: Federal Employees earn annual leave at a rate (4, 6 or 8 hours per pay period) which is based on the number of years they have served as a Federal employee. VA may offer newly-appointed Federal employee's credit for their job-related non-federal experience or active duty uniformed military service. This credited service can be used in determining the rate at which they earn annual leave. Such credit must be requested and approved prior to the appointment date and is not guaranteed. 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 Transititioning 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.