Regional Medical Officer
United States Department of State
An Equal Opportunity Employer
How to Apply
Announcement Number: RMO-2017-0002
Position Title: Foreign Service Regional Medical Officer
Open Period: February 15, 2017 – March 1, 2017
Series/Grade: FP – 0602- 01/01
Salary: $116,684 – $134,776
Promotion Potential: MC
Duty Locations: MANY Vacancies Throughout the World
Position Information: Full-time – Permanent after being tenured in the Foreign Service by a Foreign Service Tenure Board.
Must be a U.S. citizen. Potential applicants should read the entire announcement to ensure that they meet all of the requirements and understand a Foreign Service career.
Applicants may not reapply for one year after the previous application for the same position.
If a State Department Suitability Review Panel denied suitability in the last two years, you may not apply (except Diplomatic Security Special Agent (SA) candidates whose denial was based solely on the unique requirements for SAs.)
The U.S. Department of State, our country’s lead foreign policy agency, provides a rich international experience whether at home or abroad, and opportunities to become responsible leaders. Each day, our employees make a difference as they contribute to our global society and defend and advance our country’s interests and values. They work on the business of diplomacy and high priority issues that impact the safety, security, and prosperity of our world – human rights, environment, energy, food security, public health, and technology – all while experiencing a unique career. Our talented workforce reflects and champions all of our strengths and diversity – personal, professional, and educational. We offer a workplace that values and rewards leadership, collaboration and innovation, and personal and professional development.
The Bureau of Medical Services (MED) in the Department of State maintains and promotes the health of employees and their accompanying family members who represent United States government agencies abroad. The Department assigns Foreign Service Medical Officers (RMOs), Psychiatrists (RMO/Ps), Medical Providers (MPs), and Medical Laboratory Scientists (RMLS) to selected posts overseas. Many of these posts have significant health risks and local medical care that is inadequate by U.S. standards.
As a member of a diplomatic team, you will not only help to accomplish the mission of the Department of State, but also will be a representative of your country to the people of other nations. A Foreign Service career involves uncommon commitments and occasional hardships, as well as unique rewards and opportunities. A decision to enter this career should be based on extraordinary motivation and a firm dedication to public service.
- Regular Travel
- An FSS generally spends the majority of his/her career assigned to the Department of State’s overseas missions and at times, lives away from family and/or in difficult or isolated conditions. Selected applicants will be notified of an Oral Assessment (OA) requirement in Washington D.C. For the selected applicants, all travel and other expenses incurred in connection with the OA are the sole responsibility of the applicant.
- After completing orientation and initial training in Washington, D.C., an FSS usually is assigned to two overseas tours, each two years in length, directed by the Department. After the initial two tours, assignments will be for periods of one to three years overseas or in the United States.
- Be a U.S. citizen and available for worldwide service.
- Be able to obtain a Top Secret Security Clearance.
- Be able to obtain an appropriate Foreign Service Medical Clearance.
- Be able to obtain a favorable Suitability Review Panel determination.*
- Be at least 20 years old and at least 21 years old to be appointed.
- Be appointed prior to age 60 (preference eligible veterans excepted).**
An RMO works either independently or as a member of a team of FS Medical Specialists to provide medical support for USG employees and their EFMs. An RMO is considered “essential personnel” and is expected to be available on-call 24 hours a day, seven days a week. RMOs duties may include, but not limited to:
- Provision of direct primary and preventive healthcare for pediatric, obstetric, and adult patients and emergency and acute care services
- Performance of patient histories and physical examinations
- Ordering and analyzing diagnostic tests
- Providing routine and travel vaccinations, mental health support and care, in collaboration with RMO/P colleagues
- Prescribing medications for patients both on paper prescription pads and electronically
- Performing therapeutic procedures within the scope of primary and emergency care
- Screening the patient population for and responding to concerns about domestic violence and abuse
- Competent and thorough documentation of patient care and utilization of electronic health records
- Management of primary healthcare needs of a regional patient population dispersed across multiple countries
- Coordination of inpatient care and monitoring for patients hospitalized in region
- Anticipating and arranging for medical evacuation of patients
- Managing infectious disease risks, including malaria and other tropical diseases; deployment of population outreach efforts to encourage use of prophylactic medications where appropriate;
- Establishing health lifestyle programs and supporting patients in their adjustment to the FS
- Ensuring patient confidentiality and records integrity
- Serving as patient advocate, as appropriate
- Maintenance of credentials, licensure, and continuing medical education
- Competent management of Workman’s Compensation injury claims at post and collaboration with patient’s third party health insurance plans for indicated situations
- Monitoring of food and water safety issues
- Provision of emergency care to staff and visitors on USG property, if warranted
- Teaching CPR and first responder courses, as needed
- Collaboration with local healthcare officials
- Liaison with local and international experts
- Provision of consultative support to mission personnel, including representatives from the Centers for Disease Control, on host nation and mission-specific health-related issues if needed
- Management of health unit (HU) personnel and resources
- Collaboration and consultation with MP, RMLS or LE staff at posts in RMO region, supervision of MP, RMLS or LE Staff at assigned post and oversight of hiring of local HU employees
- Orientation and training of new employees, mentoring of new clinical colleagues
- Ensure use of universal infectious disease and safety precautions at post
- Setting budgetary priorities and maintenance of fiscal responsibility
- Maintenance of medical records and Ensuring appropriate health information security measures in the health unit
- Updating medical information booklet and the Medical Capabilities Information database
- Conducting of patient satisfaction surveys and implementation of workflow modifications to address identified areas for improvement
- Managing region-wide immunization program
- Submission of reports for statistical surveillance as directed by MED
- Adherence to quality assurance procedures
- Advisor to Human Reourses in facilitating Emergency Visitation Travel for employees or EFMS
- Monitoring of health unit staff competency and continuing education
- Evaluation of local hospitals, doctors, and laboratories for service availability and standards of care, safety standards utilized by local blood bank where appropriate, and safety standards of local pharmacies and pharmaceutical suppliers where available
- Serving in role of occupational health advisor when indicated
- Selection and support of post medical advisors
- Oversight of local employee pre-employment, fitness for duty, and driver’s certification screening programs
- Manage all medical aspects of emergency preparedness programs at their post, and collaborate with medical colleagues in their region with regards to their post specific programs, including measures to address terrorist threats, weapons of mass destruction, civil unrest, and natural disasters and management of MED’s emergency response programs, and management of mass casualty evacuations.
- Identification of and provision of training to first responder staff
- Coordination of post pandemic medical response plan
- Provision of medical leadership and emergency medical care during crises
Regional Care Responsibilities
- Performance of regular regional travel and in response to immediate post needs
- Collaboration with regional colleagues, including performance of clinical peer review
- Liaison with Regional Medical Managers (RMMs)
- Provision of remote patient consultation via telemedicine or other communication means
- Maintenance of regular communication with MED offices in Washington D.C. as warranted
Licensure and Board Certification
Applicants must be currently board certified in Family Practice (preferred) or Internal Medicine or Emergency Medicine (accepted) by the American Board of Medical Specialties or Osteopathic Board. American Board certification and re-certification, state medical licensure, and Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registration must be maintained for the duration of employment.
Applicants must have a minimum of 4 years of post-residency clinical experience at the time of application and 5 years of such experience prior to starting employment as a RMO. Fifty percent of the physician’s time must be involved in direct primary care for at least 4 out of the preceding 5 years. Otherwise qualified clinicians who have practiced primarily emergency medicine, hospital based practice or other non-ambulatory settings must demonstrate thorough understanding of primary care practice fundamentals as defined in the next paragraph.
“Primary care” encompasses adult and pediatric diagnosis and treatment of acute illness and management of chronic diseases, routine gynecologic care, prenatal care, adult health maintenance and preventive health care, well child care and immunization management. It embraces the total family unit across the lifespan, including emotional and physical aspects that impact overall well-being. The primary care physician utilizes and coordinates sub-specialty professional consultations when needed.
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSA)
The department has conducted extensive job analysis research to determine KSAs and other attributes conducive to successful performance as an RMO. An applicant’s education level, work experience, and other qualifications will be considered as part of the hiring decision-making process based on these KSA criteria.
Applicants must have demonstrated a high degree of clinical and management expertise. The patient population covered is unique because of background and lifestyle as part of a diplomatic community overseas. This population also differs in terms of clinical and administrative needs and the national security concerns inherent in their employment. Previous experience working in an occupational setting and/or in an overseas setting is advantageous.
The candidate must demonstrate the ability to manage administrative aspects of an HU as well as the ability to cope with extraordinary medical crises, often in remote and isolated settings. Education and experience must demonstrate that the applicant can function as a public/community health provider.
The applicant must be a skilled and experienced primary health care practitioner with excellent interpersonal skills. The applicant must be able to function well within a complex organization and have experience working in a high stress environment, and recognize and understand the problems of delivering health care to Americans posted in locations where local medical resources are limited or non-existent. The ability to logically and objectively analyze patient problems and apply sound clinical judgment is required. Experience in providing long distance triage and care via electronic communications such as telephone, telemedicine, radio, and e-mail to individuals is preferred.
Applicants must have the capacity to gain the cooperation and confidence of patients, co-workers, supervisors, and subordinates. Individuals must have experience working in multidisciplinary practice as well as experience in team building, leadership and management. Effective written and oral communications skills are essential, as well as the ability to present medical findings in a clear and concise manner to medical and non-medical personnel. The demonstrated ability to teach or lecture to groups on medical issues is preferred.
Applicants must be able to develop, coordinate, and administer health care delivery programs. These include but are not limited to individual and community health promotion and disease prevention programs. This includes teaching health topics to both small and large groups. Applicants must provide comprehensive health assessments and medical care to individuals and families across the lifespan.
Applicants must be able to organize and supervise a diverse group of health care providers who have varying degrees of expertise, education, and command of the English language. Applicants must understand the unique cultural differences related to health care delivery in varied countries and address these differences in a positive manner. Applicants must be able to assess, diagnose, and treat infectious diseases.
Applicants must possess a high degree of integrity, decisiveness and fairness in order to equitably apply the regulations and policies of the medical program to all eligible persons.
Knowledge and hands-on familiarity with computer systems are preferred.
Knowledge of infectious diseases, pediatrics, obstetrics, gynecology, women’s health issues, dermatology, otorhinolaryngology, gastroenterology, urology, general surgery, orthopedics, neurology, radiology, psychiatry, nutrition, occupational medicine, epidemiology, vaccines, diagnostic testing, emergency techniques, clinical pharmacology, health-related environmental factors, medical aspects of terrorism, alcoholism and drug abuse, laboratory medicine, food safety and medical quality assurance procedures.
Specific skills in medical history-taking, physical examination, planning of evaluation and treatment, electrocardiography, minor surgery, triage, operating medical equipment, basic computer programs, research techniques, and working with limited resources.
Personal skills in social perceptiveness, oral communication, written communication, reading comprehension, active listening, critical thinking, active learning, judgment and decision making, complex problem solving, service orientation, teaching supervision, leadership, time management, acclimating to different cultures, collaborating, learning strategies, persuasion, and organizing events and projects.
Other attributes include empathetic personality, self-confidence, adaptability, unflappability, creativity, confidentiality, interest in Foreign Service work, loyalty to the United States, tolerance of non-scheduled work hours, physical endurance, worldwide availability, and tolerance of travel, tolerance of separation from family, and working and living in difficult and/or isolated conditions.
Further desirable attributes include a willingness to deploy to high threat environments to provide care and consultation to USG employees and EFMs, the ability to consult with senior leaders, officials, and EFMs with tact, recognizing the limited role of the physician in a non-medical organizational environment, the capability to work effectively with colleagues from other cultures, and the ability to create supportive and effective professional relationships in overseas environments.
RMOs may need to perform essential functions effectively in environments that pose physical or other occupational challenges. These duties may include:
- Provision of direct patient care that may require heavy lifting, pulling, stooping, and twisting in austere environments
- Travelling independently to regional posts utilizing commercial air carriers, military aircraft, or other transportation modalities that may not offer special access accommodations
- Provision of emergency care in any location following an accident, natural disaster, or attack and emergency care in potentially hostile or physically challenging environments, such as in buildings without elevators or in areas with irregular spaces that require kneeling, bending, stooping, lifting, and running
- Transportation of self or of patients via small aircraft, helicopters, ambulances, or other non-standard modes of transportation with small entrances and high floors, such as high axle armored vehicles
At the time of application, applicants must possess:
- Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathy (DO) degree from a school in the U.S. or Canada that was approved by a recognized U.S. accrediting body in the year of the applicant’s graduation.
- MD or DO or equivalent degree from a foreign school that provided educational and medical knowledge substantially equivalent to accredited schools in the U.S. This equivalency may be demonstrated by either permanent certification of the applicant’s school by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) or a Fifth Pathway Certificate.
- If you completed premedical education in the U.S. and graduate education in a foreign country. For further accreditation information please go to acgme.org.
Subsequent to obtaining a MD or DO degree, a candidate must have completed formal residency training. Qualifying graduate training programs include only those residency programs within the U.S or Canada and which are approved by an accrediting body recognized by the American Medical Association (AMA) or American Osteopathic Association (AOA).
A fellowship program involves advanced training (beyond residency training) in a given medical subspecialty in either a clinical or research setting in a hospital or other institution accredited in the U.S. by a recognized body of the AMA or AOA for such training.
You must submit all transcripts supporting your educational achievements for you to receive credit. Official or unofficial transcripts may be submitted for the application process.
Your transcript must include your name, the school’s name, the degree and date awarded. A transcript missing any of the key elements above will not pass the minimum qualifications and the candidacy will be ended. Copies of diplomas may not be submitted in lieu of transcripts for education above high school level.
Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order to be credited towards qualifications. Education completed in foreign colleges or universities may be used to meet the education requirements if you can show that the foreign education is comparable to that received in an accredited educational institution in the United States. It is your responsibility to provide such evidence when applying. Click on the link for a list of accredited organizations recognized as specializing in interpretation of foreign education credentials.
How You Will Be Evaluated
Candidates will be evaluated on their total background including experience, education, awards, training, and self-development as it relates to the position. Selection for this position will be made only from among candidates possessing the best qualifications. Part-time work experience will be prorated.
After the initial review of applicants and the qualifications evaluation panel, the most competitive candidates will be invited to an Oral Assessment, which includes a proctored writing examination. The ability to draft an essay which demonstrates a command of English grammar, spelling, and punctuation will be an important consideration in determining which candidates to invite to an oral assessment. For more information, please visit https://careers.state.gov/work/foreign-service/specialist/selection-process.
Medical Credentialing and Indemnification
Applicants are subject to a medical credentialing process conducted by the Quality Improvement Staff of the Office of Medical Services. The medical credentialing process includes queries of the National Practitioner Data Bank and Physician Data Profile through the American Medical Association (AMA). Once hired, medical personnel are indemnified for official duties only through the U.S. Federal Tort Claims Act.
You can review our benefits at: https://careers.state.gov/work/benefits/fss
Health and medical coverage, federal retirement benefits, paid leave, a chance to see the world and experience different cultures. Overseas benefits include tax-free housing and tax-free education allowance for dependent children between K-12 overseas.
The starting salary range for RMOs is FP-01, steps 5 through 14. The starting step level is determined in part by both highest educational level achieved and also professional experience level beyond that used to meet the minimum job qualifications. Individuals already working in government positions may be appointed based on highest previous rate as a Federal employee.
Additional steps may be granted based on the following:
One step for a Master’s degree in public health from a program accredited by a nationally recognized U.S. accrediting agency.
One step for a year or more of advanced specialty training in tropical medicine.
Physicians Comparability Allowance (PCA): $14,000.00 – $30,000.00
The Department of State has current authority from the Office of Management and Budget to enter into agreement with physicians enabling allowances of $30,000 a year to full-time physicians with more than five years of Federal service, $22,000 a year to full-time physicians with more than two years of Federal service, and $14,000 to those with less than two years of Federal service. Federal service must have been as a physician.
For information on FS Salary, please visit https://careers.state.gov/faqs/faqs-wiki/foreign-service-salary-matching-pay-tables-danger-pay-overseas-moving-expenses-and-taxes.
Continuing Medical Education (CME)
RMOs receive at least 25 hours of Category 1 CME credit through an annual State Department-sponsored Continuing Medical Education conference.
*The Department of State Suitability Review Panel and standards are defined in Chapter 3 of the Foreign Affairs Manual. For more information please visit: https://fam.state.gov/.
**For more information about Veteran’s Preference and how it is applied in the FSS Selection Process, please visit: https://careers.state.gov/faqs/faqs-wiki/are-veterans-given-hiring-preference-
No applicant will be considered who has previously been separated from the Foreign Service under sections §607, §608, §610 or §611 of the Foreign Service Act of 1980, as amended, or who resigned or retired in lieu of separation under these provisions. In addition, no applicant will be considered who has previously been separated for failure to receive a career appointment under section §306 of the Foreign Service Act of 1980, as amended, or who resigned or retired in lieu thereof. An FSS separated for failure to receive a career appointment under section 306 may not re-apply to be an FSS in the same skill code, but may apply for another skill code (or to be a Foreign Service Generalist).
Executive Branch agencies are barred by 5 US Code 3303 as amended from accepting or considering prohibited political recommendations and are required to return any prohibited political recommendations to sender. In addition, as mandated by 5 US Code 3110, relatives of federal employees cannot be granted preference in competing for these employment opportunities.
It is the policy of the Federal Government to treat all of its employees with dignity and respect and to provide a workplace that is free from discrimination whether discrimination is based on race, color, religion, sex (including gender identity or pregnancy), national origin, disability, political affiliation, marital status, membership in an employee organization, age, sexual orientation, or other non-merit factors.
The Department of State provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodations for any part of the application or hiring process should so advise the Department at ReasonableAccommodations@state.gov, within one week of receiving their invitation to the oral assessment. Decisions for granting reasonable accommodations are made on a case-by-case basis.
You should submit your application early, not waiting for the deadline, as application packages must be complete, submitted, and received by the closing date to be considered. There are no exceptions.
- From this Vacancy Announcement, click on “Apply.” Go to the USAJobs Log In screen and log in to your USAJobs account or follow the link and instructions to create an account.
- Follow the USAJobs Application Process and provide your required USAJobs federal online resume. USAJobs will transfer you to the State Department agency online application site. Follow the instructions and answer the online questions. Your Accomplishments Questionnaire and Statement of Interest responses must be completed in the online application. You may save your work and can return to the application from USAJobs at any time prior to the deadline.
- The application system allows up to four methods to submit required documentation: Transfer documents from a USAJOBS portfolio; upload documents from your computer; resubmit documents from a previous application; or fax. If you are submitting documents by fax, you must follow the fax directions, and generate and use the fax coversheets for your set(s) of documents.
- After you attach all of your required supporting documentation, answer all the required application questions, and complete the application steps, please review the entire application packet, including the links for your submitted documents.
- Confirm and submit your application package, which will be used to evaluate your qualifications for this position.
Application Submission Deadline: 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on the closing date of this announcement to complete the application process and successfully submit any documentation required in this Vacancy Announcement. If you are having technical difficulty with the application process, please contact the Monster Government Services (MGS) Help Desk by calling 1-866-656-6830 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The MGS Help Desk is available Monday through Friday from 7 am to 7 pm Eastern Time. For more information on the FSS hiring processes, please visit our FAQs at https://careers.state.gov/faqs.
If you have any questions regarding FS careers, please visit our Careers.State.Gov site and post your question(s) on the appropriate Forum in the Connect section: https://careers.state.gov/connect/forums.
It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure all required documents are uploaded and the application is fully completed before the closing deadline of this announcement. Any missing required documents or incomplete applications will result in your application not being considered further.
- USAJobs Résumé Builder is the résumé format that is accepted for this Vacancy Announcement.
- Completed online application including the required Accomplishments Questionnaire and Statement of Interest narratives in the online application.
- Uploaded/faxed all required supporting documentation including proof of educational achievements, certifications, professional licenses, or completed forms as required in this Vacancy Announcement to qualify for this position.
- If claiming a 5 pt. veteran’s preference, you must submit a copy of your DD-214. If claiming a 10 pt. veteran’s preference, you must submit your VA letter and SF-15, in addition to your DD-214.
For RMO, required attachments include:
- Copy of current Medical License, Medical Degree and verification of highest level of medical training.
- Proof of Board Certification.
- Proof of completion of residency.
- Standard Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) certificate, if applicable, and other required documentation to demonstrate the U.S. equivalency of a foreign degree.
- Application Form VA-10-2850 (Complete Items 1 – 17 and 31 – 40), which can be found on the Veterans Affairs (VA) website: http://www.va.gov/vaforms/form_detail.asp?FormNo=2850.
All documentation submitted for this announcement on the VA forms will be reviewed and verified by Department of State personnel only.
Accomplishments Questionnaire and Statement of Interest
These required questions provide an opportunity to describe examples and accomplishments from your education, life, and/or work experience that demonstrate your qualifications for becoming an FSS. Examples can be drawn from any part of your professional or personal experience. The information you give may be used in your oral assessment should you be invited and is an important factor in the competitive evaluation of applicants. Each response is limited to 300 words or fewer (maximum length 2,000 characters) for each item. You should compose your replies carefully, as one of the skills necessary to succeed as an FSS is the ability to write clearly and concisely. Answers to the all of the items in the Accomplishments Questionnaire and Statement of Interest are required and must be completed in the online application.
- Describe your clinical experience working with well and acutely ill infants, children and adolescents. Include the type of practice setting and the average number of patients seen weekly. Include a statement about your ability to manage care for a pediatric population in a remote setting.
- Provide the same information about your women’s health care experience.
- Describe your clinical experience and give a self-assessment of your abilities to care for and stabilize multiple trauma patients prior to a medical evacuation.
- Describe a specific complex clinical case that demonstrates your skills in organizing patient problems and solutions.
Organizational abilities: Describe a specific achievement demonstrating your planning and organizational skills in the setting of a multidisciplinary clinical team or practice.
Leadership and teamwork abilities: Discuss your abilities to participate as a team member working toward a common goal, as well as examples of your ability to lead a team in the accomplishment of a goal.
Public speaking and teaching ability: Describe specific examples demonstrating your public speaking and teaching abilities as part of an assignment or work-related task.
Interpersonal skills: Provide an example of effectively dealing with difficult patients, colleagues, or situation at work utilizing your interpersonal skills.
Crisis Management Skills: Describe an example in which your skills significantly contributed to the positive outcome of a complex or difficult clinical crisis situation.
Statement of Interest
Required narrative Statement of Interest which discusses your:
- Motivation for joining the Foreign Service,
- Comments about your work experience, including special skills (e.g. computer), current licenses, honors, awards, special accomplishments, and/or training (with date completed) relating to this position, and
- Experience living or working in a multicultural environment, overseas or in U.S.
Agency Contact Info
Medical Services Office
U.S. Department of State
2401 E Street, NW
SA-1 – Room L-216
Attn: MED PERSONNEL
Washington , DC
What to Expect Next
Once submitted, your application status on USAJobs will change from “received” to “referred” or “not referred” after the close of the announcement. This status on USAJobs will not be updated further.
Additional notifications to applicants concerning the application status will be by e-mail from the U.S. Department of State.
Due to the high volume of applications, we ask all applicants to remain patient and await communication. It is not uncommon for several months to pass before you are informed of the result of your application.
We recommend adding the Department of State domain (@state.gov) as an approved sender.
For more information in the Foreign Service selection process, please visit https://careers.state.gov/work/foreign-service/specialist/selection-process.