Frontier Health
  • Big Stone Gap, VA, USA
  • Full Time

Looking for a new job or to start a career? Do you want to make a difference in someone's life? Do you have a heart for individuals with disabilities? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then Frontier Health has positions available where you can put your skills to use and make a difference in a person's life while having perks like affordable insurance, sign-on bonuses, retirement, flexible spending, and paid time off. Positions available include a variety of shifts in residential, day and employment settings to support people in achieving their full potential.

Developmental Services in Big Stone Gap is seeking a Direct Support Specialist to work with adults who have intellectual and developmental disabilities in a day support program.

The Direct Support Specialist will teach skills in areas of independent living, self care, social skills and career exploration. Applicant must be dependable, cooperative and patient. Must also have excellent written/verbal communication skills and the ability to effectively deal with challenging situations. High School diploma or equivalent required and experience is preferred. Must be at least 21 years of age with a valid driver's license and clear criminal record required.

Previous experience preferred but not necessary. Frontier Health will provide the training you need to be successful. What do you need to be eligible? High school diploma or equivalent, clean drug screen, clear background checks, driver's license with good driving record and be 21 years old to drive agency vehicles.


All Direct Support Specialists have the primary responsibility to support individuals in their achievement of the highest level of independence. The Direct Support Specialist will provide this support via education, instruction and support of persons served.

  • Support the person to participate in the community according to their individual choice and preference.
  • Teach the person decision-making skills and selection of realistic options.
  • Encourage the person to make informed choices, including decisions regarding his/her services.
  • Encourage the person to become a responsible citizen in his/her community of choice.
  • Teach the person skills needed to take "as much" responsibility as possible for tasks including personal safety, grooming and cleanliness, household chores, meal preparation/healthy eating habits, money management, medication and health issues, work/employment skills, community awareness, and other skills necessary for the individual to become fully integrated into his/her community of choice.
  • The Direct Support Specialist will ensure the health and safety of person and person's belongings at all times.
  • Follow procedures to report any suspicion of abuse, neglect, and/or exploitation.
  • Be very knowledgeable of all aspects of the ISP including special programs/plans (behavior, nutrition, safety, etc.) and immediately notify the supervisor of any needed changes to the ISP.
  • Recommend any needed changes in goals/outcomes and risks (health or otherwise).
  • At all times, treat the individual as an adult exhibiting the highest level of dignity and respect.


Education: High School Diploma/GED preferred with applicable experience.

Licensure: Must be 21 years of age with a valid Virginia driver's license. Eligible for FH drivers' insurance.

Certification: N/A

Experience: Experience in intellectual, developmental, and/or mental health disabilities preferred, according to the populations served..

Knowledge/Skills: Verbal/written communication skills.

Ability to maintain composure in difficult situations.

Ability to safely operate 15-passenger van.

Knowledge of adaptive/medical and/or production/maintenance equipment.

Required Training: Successful completion of all training with required time frames.


Equipment and tools encountered in healthcare settings and/or industrial/commercial work. Computer, fax, copier, motor vehicle, household appliances, and any other equipment required to perform the functions of the position.


  1. Must be flexible with schedule and assignments.
  2. Responsible for providing oversight and instructions to individuals on a continuous basis during his/her scheduled shift.
  3. Hygiene duties as identified on the Individual Support Plan (ISP): Assistance with brushing and flossing teeth, care of nails, shaving, bathing, use of deodorant, dressing/undressing, routine skin care, toileting.
  4. Positioning and Transfer duties as identified in the ISP: Changing positions, transfers to bed/toilet/vehicle, assistance with ambulation.
  5. Medication administration duties as identified in the ISP, guidelines, and MAR. Counting medications as assigned to residential staff on a monthly basis.
  6. Meal preparation duties as identified in the ISP and under possible direction of a dietician: Meal planning, purchase of nutritional foods, meal preparation/serving and clean up.
  7. Laundry duties as identified in the ISP: Washing and folding laundry.
  8. Ensure home is clean and free of odors. Duties include assistance with mopping, vacuuming, dusting, stripping beds, cleaning bathrooms and kitchen, organizing drawers, closets and cabinets. Must assist person with duties as identified in ISP. Transportation duties: To and from work, activity programs, doctor appointments, social and recreational activities.
  9. Attend and participate in regularly scheduled staff meetings and inservices and individual program planning staffings, as needed.
  10. All other duties as assigned.

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