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Classification & Qualifications General Schedule Qualification Standards

Dental Assistant Series, 0681

Individual Occupational Requirements

NOTE: Public Law 97-35 requires that persons who administer radiologic procedures meet the credentialing standards in 42 CFR Part 75. Essentially, they must (l) 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 (2) be certified as radiographers in their field. The following meet these requirements:

(1) Persons employed by the Federal Government as radiologic personnel prior to the effective date of the regulation (January 13, 1986) who show evidence of current or fully satisfactory performance or certification of such from a licensed practitioner such as a doctor of medicine, osteopathy, dentistry, podiatry, or chiropractic who prescribes radiologic procedures to others.

(2) Persons first employed by the Federal Government as radiologic personnel after the effective date of the regulation who (a) received training from institutions in a State or foreign jurisdiction that did not accredit training in that particular field at the time of graduation, or (b) practiced in a State or foreign jurisdiction that did not license that particular field or did not allow special eligibility to take a licensure examination for those who did not graduate from an accredited educational program, provided such persons show evidence of training, experience, and competence, as determined by OPM or the employing agency.

All applicants, however, must meet the requirements below.

Specialized Experience

(for positions at GS-4 and above): Experience in dental assistance to general or specialized dentistry, dental assistant (expanded function) work, or any combination of these appropriate to the position being filled.

OR

Education and Training:

For GS-3:

Successful completion of (a) a 1-year dental assistant program or completion of l year of a dental hygiene program accredited by the American Dental Association's Commission on Accreditation that included a course in radiation physics; radiation biology; radiation health, safety, and protection; X-ray films and radiographic film quality, radiographic techniques; darkroom and processing techniques; and film mounting; or (b) practical nurse training approved by the appropriate State, territory, or District of Columbia accrediting body.

For GS-4:

Successful completion of a 2-year dental assistant program or completion of a 2-year dental hygiene program accredited by the American Dental Association's Commission on Accreditation that included at least 12 semester hours of courses such as those shown above for GS-3.

For GS-5:

Successful completion of a full 4-year course of study in a dental assistant or dental hygiene program that included at least 24 semester hours in courses as shown above for GS-3.

Special Requirements for GS-5 and above Dental Assistant (Expanded Function):

Applicants for Dental Assistant (Expanded Function) positions must have completed l year of acceptable course work, preceptorship, or other formal training and/or work assignments specifically designed to equip them with knowledge and skills required to perform intra-oral procedures involved in the position to be filled. Examples of acceptable training are:

  • Courses in a dental hygiene or dental assistant program accredited by the American Dental Association's Commission on Accreditation that are directly related to the intra-oral procedures (also referred to as expanded functions) that are to be performed in the position to be filled.
  • U.S. Army's Dental Therapy Assistant Training Program.
  • Continuing education courses in expanded functions for dental assistants offered by the Indian Health Service of the Department of Health and Human Services.
  • Other training comparable to the above in private or governmental hospitals, clinics, or schools that included formal classroom instruction and clinical training in the knowledge and skills required to perform intra-oral procedures in the position to be filled.
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