What is a Medical Reserve Corps?
A Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) is part of the Citizen Corps program, a national initiative to mobilize and coordinate volunteers. MRC volunteers are health professionals and others who are willing to be called in the event of a public health crisis or large scale disaster.
Who should volunteer with the MRC at the University of Minnesota?
Any student, faculty, or staff in the Academic Health Center or Boynton Health Services as well as College of Biological Science students referred by the AHC Health Careers Center. The MRC at the U is interested in both clinically licensed individuals as well as non-licensed individuals who have a strong interest in assisting in the response efforts during a health related emergency. Current MRC members with clinical experience include nurses, doctors, dentists, nursing assistants, pharmacists, respiratory therapists, public health professionals, epidemiologists, veterinary medicine professionals and others. AHC affiliated non-clinical individuals with expertise in IT, communication and administration are also encouraged to join the University Medical Reserve Corps.
What will volunteers do?
It depends on the emergency, but could include taking medical histories, administering vaccines or medications, answering a hotline, or assisting at a local hospital. Non-clinical staff may be needed as mass clinic greeters, supply and equipment monitors, or data entry and information management assistants. MRC volunteers will augment and assist medical staff who are leading the response efforts.
How do I sign up to volunteer?
Go to http://mrc.ahc.umn.edu. The initial registration should take less than 10 minutes. After the data is processed, nurses, physicians, dentists and pharmacists will receive a link via email at a later date to provide more detailed information, such as license numbers and specific skills you possess.
If I am called do I have to go?
No. We recognize that, for whatever reason, the timing might not be right for you. However, we need many volunteers in our program so we can adequately staff any emergency. We know that not everyone will always be available. If we call you and ask you to volunteer, you can always decline. We will call you again if your skills could be valuable in a subsequent deployment.
Are there other MRC's in Minnesota?
Yes. MRC's are being established in all metro counties and throughout the state. To avoid confusion during a large scale response involving multiple Medical Reserve Corps units, it is strongly recommended that individuals sign up for membership in one MRC unit.
What should I do next, once I have registered?
We request everyone take MRC 101 an Introduction/Orientation to the University’s Medical Reserve Corps in person or online. Face to face orientation sessions will resume in the fall of 2010. Additional training courses are available to assist members in preparing for their role in a public health disaster. Information on available training courses can be found in the monthly MRC newsletter.
I still have questions. Who can I contact?
Call Kathy Berlin, MRC Coordinator at 612-626-4722 or email at email@example.com.