Ohio Responds Frequently Asked Questions

Kentucky Helps Frequently Asked Questions

Indiana Department of Health Frequently Asked Questions


TMRC seek medical and non-medical volunteers to assist with emergency preparedness and response efforts. Community members without medical training can assist with administrative and other essential support functions. Volunteers in the MRC program include:

Licensed/Certified Medical Professionals

  • Physicians
  • Nurses
  • Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs)
  • Pharmacists
  • Paramedics
  • Physician Assistants
  • Allied Health Professionals
  • Veterinarians
  • Public Health Professionals
  • Dentists
  • Epidemiologists
  • Mental Health Professionals/Social Workers

Non-Medical Support Personnel/Community Members

  • Interpreters
  • Chaplain
  • Clerical Support
  • Health Educators
  • Logistics
  • Communications
  • Information Technology
  • Administrative Personnel
  • Animal Care Technicians
  • Personal Care Assistants (DCP, PCA, CNA, STNA)


Volunteers are at the heart of the MRC. The existence of the nationwide, community-based movement is due to the willingness pf volunteers to serve their communities in times of need. Without this generous offer of service, there would be no MRC. Becoming an MRC volunteer provides the opportunity to belong to a group with a strong sense of mission and purpose.

MRC benefits you and your community by:

  • Reinforcing public health and emergency response infrastructures by providing supplemental personnel
  • Enabling communities to meet specific needs
  • Affording the local community more autonomy by reducing the dependence on state and national resources
  • Giving community members the opportunity to participate in developing strategies to make their communities healthier and safer
  • Providing a collaborative atmosphere for information sharing and coordination among partner organizations
  • Enabling dialogue between emergency management and public health agencies
  • Supporting national recognition of local public health and emergency response efforts


MRC Volunteer roles will vary, depending on the emergency or disaster, and what staffing needs exist. Volunteers may also be assigned duties that are different from traditional every day work duties. For example, a physician may assist with checking blood glucose at a community fair, giving injections at a vaccination clinic, or providing patient education on carbon monoxide poisoning. Support volunteers may be asked to enter patient data, or serve as a patient greeter. CHCMRC volunteers will not be assigned to roles that they do not feel comfortable with or that jeopardize their health and safety.

MRC volunteers train, both online and in classroom settings, in order to improve their skills, knowledge, and abilities. MRC Volunteers may also participate in area drills and exercises with community partners to help better prepare for a real event.

In an emergency, local resources get called upon first, sometimes with little to no warning. As a member of your MRC unit, you can be a part of an organized and trained team. You will be ready and able to bolster local emergency planning and response capabilities.

Major emergencies can overwhelm the capabilities of responders, particularly during the first 12-72 hours. Medical and other health volunteers can provide an important ‘surge’ capacity during this critical period. Communities often need medically trained individuals to fill gaps in their emergency response plans.

MRC medical volunteers may find themselves working alongside Red Cross volunteers in a shelter setting supplementing the provision of health services, providing care in an alternate care setting, or staffing a point-of-dispensing (POD) site providing medical countermeasures to the population.

Individuals with a non-medical background typically serve their community by assisting with administrative and other essential support functions. This might include working in the following areas: administrations, transportation, training, supply/logistics, chaplaincy/spiritual care, volunteer management, or communications.

You may also work closely with staff members from the local health department, emergency management agency, hospital, or other organizations, such as the American Red Cross, that partner with the MRC. In fact, services you provide may help these other organizations meet their mission.

Every attempt will be made to match the skills and license or registration level of the volunteer with the assignment during an emergency response.

Volunteer Opportunities:

They frequently contribute to community health activities that promote healthy habits. Examples of volunteer opportunities that CHCMRC volunteers may participate in and support include:

  • Emergency Preparedness and Response Trainings
  • Health Screenings
  • Emergency Sheltering
  • Obesity Reduction
  • Responder Rehab
  • Vaccination Clinics
  • Disaster Medical Support
  • Outreach to Underserved Community Members
  • Disaster Risk Reduction
  • Heart Health
  • Medical Facility Surge Capacity
  • Tobacco Cessation
  • First Aid during Public Gatherings
  • Community Event Support
  • Planning, Logistical, & Administrative Support
  • Healthy Living
  • Veterinary Support and Pet Preparedness  
  • Health Education and Promotion
  • Engaging Youth in Public Health Activities

Example Volunteer Roles:

  • Dispensing antibiotics
  • Injecting vaccines*
  • Reviewing health histories
  • Conducting medical screening*
  • Performing patient exams*
  • Patient care*
  • Triage
  • Outreach and education
  • Interpretation
  • Transporting patients
  • Staffing a call center to provide information about a disease
  • Setting up hospital equipment
  • Greeting and directing people through a POD
  • Managing the flow of people through a POD
  • Volunteer recruitment
  • HAM radio operation

*These roles must be fulfilled by a medical volunteer


Ohio Law provides liability protections to registered and trained Ohio Medical Reserve Corps volunteers during local, state, or federally declared emergencies, disasters, drill/exercises, and trainings. The Ohio Department of Health and the Ohio Emergency Management Association jointly share the responsibilities of the Ohio Revised Code (ORC) applicable to liability protection for MRC volunteers. the statute also protects a registered volunteer’s personal information on the Ohio Responds Database from public disclosure. Review the Ohio Responds Limited Liability Protection document describing the Ohio Law.

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