The Medical Reserve Corps Volunteer Program


We can all agree that emergencies and disasters of many different types can occur, almost daily, somewhere in our world.  Whether we care to admit it to ourselves, or not, these emergency events are not just something we see on television – but they can happen in our own back yard and involve us at a very personal level.  Emergency preparedness programming, planning, and response is nothing new to us.  Benjamin Franklin, as just one historical example, began the first volunteer fire company in Philadelphia and the Civil Defense programs of World War Two and Cold War were at the forefront of American Homeland Security.  Americans are unique among the citizens of the world in that we are extremely proactive in our communities and are the first to step forward to help each other in time of emergency and disaster.  Ours is a rich heritage of caring and sharing for one another.
            Prior emergency and disaster situations have shown us that governmental forces cannot do the job alone and also shows that professionals volunteer their services in time of community and human need as part of their professional and personal caring ethic.  To more fully develop the Medical Reserve Corps, the United States Office of the Surgeon General offered “mini-grants” to begin the development of such community volunteer outreach services.  The Middlesex County Public Health Department was among the first in the nation to be accepted as one of the initial 40 Medical Reserve Corps Programs.
            The Middlesex County Medical Reserve Corps Program is dedicated to the development of a trained cadre of experienced, licensed professionals in the fields of medicine, public health, environmental science, mental health, social services, pastoral care, and language specialists to augment existing trained manpower and resources in time of emergency, disaster, infectious disease outbreak, or technological emergency.  Medical Reserve Corps volunteers are full members of the Middlesex County Public Health Department’s team of professionals and will have the opportunity to make a real difference in the lives, safety, health, and survival of more than 750,000of your neighbors in Middlesex County.  There is no such thing as “An Army of One”.  Together, we are stronger than we can ever be as individuals.  Our collective strength is our training, our experience, and our willingness to share our time and talents for the benefit of everyone.  Become part of the solution that can, and will, save lives.

            Please click here to view Surgeon General Richard Carmona’s letter of welcome to the Medical Reserve Corps.

            Please click here to view the United States Secretary of Health and Human Services, Tommy Thompson’s endorsement for this new and exciting program.       

David A.Papi, Director

Middlesex County Medical Reserve Corps

Who Are We Looking For?


           The Middlesex County Medical Reserve Corps membership is restricted to degreed, licensed professionals who either live or work within Middlesex County.  If you do not live or practice in Middlesex County, please contact our Medical Reserve Corps office, at 732-745-8923, to locate the Medical Reserve Corps program in your area.
            The Middlesex County Medical Reserve Corps is an operational arm of the Middlesex County Public Health Department that will provide a single coordinated program within the twenty five municipalities of Middlesex County.
            The Middlesex County Medical Reserve Corps program is open to degreed, currently licensed professionals,  retired professionals (currently or previously licensed), and advanced level students in the medical arts, public health sciences, health education, social work, mental health/psychologists, linguists/translators, pharmaceutical sciences, pastoral care professionals, health care administrators, and environmental scientists.  A formal application is required – along with copies of specific licenses, certifications, and specialties for review and validation by peer review.


What Level of Commitment Must I Make?


            The Middlesex County Public Health Department realizes that practicing and retired professionals have many demands on their time and maintains a flexible program of participation.  During normal operational periods, Medical Reserve Corps Volunteers will be able to participate in the routine operations of the Department where mutually available times permit.  Other activities in emergency program design, planning, training, exercising, and response are always scheduled for maximum participation.  For those professionals with greater time availability, the more they can more fully participate in the scope and range of available service opportunities.


Training and Education Opportunities


            All new members of the Middlesex County Medical Reserve Corps must complete a one evening program overview educational seminar which explains how the program is organized and operated.  Emphasis is placed on goals, roles, and tasks as well as the TEAM concept of operations that encompasses both Department employees and volunteer professionals.  We will also present emergency/disaster operations topics and Incident Command Structure and Response.
            Within the various specialty groups, a one or two evening program will be conducted which will cover the goals, roles, tasks, policies, and procedures that apply to our operations.  Peer level leadership and participation is a critical part of our programming.  It is our goal to have these programs eligible for professional Continuing Education Units (CEU) where possible.

            Continuing professional education within the various professional specialties will be an integral part of sustaining our Medical Reserve Corps program and CEU’s will be sought for all of our outreach efforts.  Both Public Health Department staff and Medical Reserve Volunteer Professionals will participate in the design and conduct of these programs on an equal basis.  Professionals who wish to attend Medical Reserve Corps Continuing Education programs will be charged at the going rate for professional continuing education units.


Professional Skills of Paramount Interest:

Doctor of Medicine                                                    Physicians Assistant
Doctor of Osteopathy                                                Nurse Practitioner
Doctor of Pharmacy                                                   Registered Nurse-Charge
Doctor of Dental Surgery                                          Registered Nurse
Doctor of Medical Dentistry                                     Licensed Practical Nurse
Doctor of Psychology (PhD or PsyD)                       Licensed Social Worker (LSW)
Doctor of Public Health                                             Certified Social Worker (CSW)       
Doctor of Theology                                                    Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW)
Doctor of Nursing                                                      Health Officer (NJ Licensure)
Registered Pharmacist (BPharm +)                          Pharmacy Technician (Certified)
Epidemiologist (MPH or higher)                               Health Educators (CHES)
Industrial Hygienists (CIH or CSP)                          Registered Environmental Health Specialists
Pastoral Care Professionals (Ordained)                   Linguists/Translators (Degree preferred)
Sociologists (MA or MS minimum)                          Health Physicists (MS minimum)
Public Information Officers (MA preferred)            Information Technologists (MS preferred)
Health Planners                                                         Ophthalmic Technicians
Support personnel within the above professions may make application for Medical Reserve Corps membership but must function under the direction of a licensed/certified professional.


How Do I Apply?


            All persons desiring membership in the Middlesex County Medical Reserve Corps must complete the application form that can be obtained from the Middlesex County Public Health Department by calling 732-745-8923 or that can be obtained by visiting the following website:  Any questions can be referred to our program e-mail at


Some of Our Volunteer Opportunities:


Potential Non-Emergency Services:
            Nutrition Educators (CEHE)
            Immunization Clinics (Physicians, Nurses, Health Educators)
            Emergency Trainers (various professions pertinent to topics)
            Occupational Safety and Training
            Emergency Planning
            Infectious Disease Interviewing and Contact
            Food-Handling Training Courses
            Hospital-Public Health Cooperative Programming
            Emergency Exercise Design


Emergency Event Activities:

            Emergency Casualty Management, Triage, and Patient Stabilization
            Passive and Active Disease Surveillance and Epidemiology
            Community Information, Risk Communications, and Health Education
            Community Mental Health Programming and Intervention
            Emergency First Responder Mental Health Intervention
            Mass Immunizations and Distribution of Oral Medications
            Pharmaceutical Support of Evacuees and Emergency Pharmacy Services
            Health, Medical, and Mental Health Support of Shelters
            Victim and Family Member Support Services
            Emergency Pastoral Care Services

And There Are Even More…..