Friday, April 8, 2011

Long Awaited VA Gulf War Research Program Manager Opening Announced

( -- The long awaited Gulf War Research Manager position at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has been announced this week.

The need for a full-time VA research staff position position with a primary responsibility on coordinating, steering and improving treatment-focused Gulf War illnesses research was been sought and requested for some time by the Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans’ Illnesses (RAC-GWVI).

The VA position announcement says this senior program manager, “will be responsible for the overall direction, coordination, implementation, execution, control and completion of research projects ensuring consistency with Veterans Affairs strategy, commitments and goals, including OMR operating plan.”

The VA says the position will, “oversee, plan, develop and implement the Gulf War Veteran's Illnesses (GWVI)/Military Environmental Exposures (MEE) Research portfolio,” working, “in collaboration with the Department of Defense (DoD) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to develop standard definitions and measurement tools in all areas of GWVI research.”

According to the VA’s job announcement, the new GS-15 scientific position is located in the Office of Research and Development (ORD), “which aspires to discover knowledge, develop VA researchers and health care leaders, and create innovations that advance health care for our Veterans and the nation.”

Examples of specialized experience required by the position include: “expert knowledge in medical research and development, primarily environmental chemistry, environmental toxicology, epidemiology or biostatistics, as evidenced by an appropriate advanced degree, with an in depth knowledge of clinical, ethical, and regulatory. Applicants may not substitute education for the required experience.”

Important to  Gulf War veterans is this position is focused on the science of Gulf War veterans’ illnesses and not “stress,” a hot button issue that turned countless veterans against the VA over the course of many years.

Last Fall, a top-level VA task force on Gulf War issues recommended sweeping changes to modify VA’s “culture” to one of advocacy for Gulf War veterans. 

The complete Application Package must be submitted by 11:59 PM (EST) on Wednesday, April 20, 2011.

Veterans, researchers and clinicians can help ensure this critical position is filled by a well-qualified candidate by sharing this article and the VA position announcement with potential applicants.

--Anthony Hardie



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