What is the Medical Reserve Corp

Southeast Nebraska Medical Reserve Corps is  part of the Citizen Corps network. We are a diverse unit with a range of skilled personnel including licensed medical professionals, certified lab technicians, medical technologist, experienced administrators, trained communicators and other volunteers. Southeast Nebraska MRC is one among 988 MRC units in the United States, with over 197,926 volunteers, serving communities.  

Mission Statement

The mission of the Southeast Nebraska Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) is to improve the health and safety of southeastern Nebraska communities by assisting emergency management, public health and medical professionals in preparing volunteers for emergency response planning, training and execution.

Vision Statement

The SE Nebraska MRC will be a diversified unit encompassing a range of skilled personnel including licensed medical professionals as well as non-medical volunteers including experienced clerical, trained communicators and other volunteers.


To identify, organize, and train local health professionals and lay people to respond to local emergencies.
To ensure adequate medical care to our citizens in the event of a situation that overwhelms the community’s normal ability to care for the sick and injured by providing first aid care to first responders and treating the “walking wounded.”

To provide local communities with health care professionals and other citizens, who are willing to volunteer their time and knowledge to address a community’s everyday public health needs, and to support emergency personnel in times of crisis.


Develop effective MRC units in each county 
Develop an on-going training program for all MRC volunteers
Maintain a productive working relationship with County Emergency Managers

  • Develop two groups of volunteers: professional and support.
  • Recruit members through
  • Amateur radio organizations
  • American Red Cross
  • Medical staff organizations
  • Nursing students
  • Other organizations
  • Develop a training plan for all MRC units within our jurisdiction.
  • Develop an ongoing plan for retention of volunteers.
  • Participate in applicable exercises and drills.

Who Can Volunteer for the Medical Reserve Corps?

MRC volunteers may include medical and public health professionals, such as physicians, nurses, pharmacists, emergency medical technicians, dentists, veterinarians, epidemiologists, and infectious disease specialists. In addition, volunteer interpreters, chaplains, amateur radio operators, logistics experts, legal advisers, and others may fill key support positions.

What Do Medical Reserve Corps Volunteers Do? (Taken from national guidelines)

  • MRC volunteers work with existing local emergency response programs
  • MRC volunteers supplement existing local emergency response activities, such as:
    • Shelter/alternate care facility staffing
    • Hospital surge capacity support
    • Mass prophylaxis clinic staffing
  • MRC volunteers support community preparedness activities, such as:
    • Dispensing clinic exercises
    • Personal preparedness education
  • MRC volunteers supplement existing local public health initiatives, such as:
    • Outreach and prevention (e.g., West Nile virus, severe acute respiratory syndrome, HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted diseases, smoking, substance abuse, diabetes detection, cardiac rehabilitation and screening, physical fitness, domestic violence, injury, vehicle safety, women’s health, and prostate and other cancers)
    • Immunization programs (e.g., childhood diseases, influenza, smallpox)
    • Blood drives
    • Case management and care planning (for families, special needs populations, high-risk infants, adolescents, the elderly, women, and others)
    • Pandemic influenza planning

Common question about the MR

The Medical Reserve Corps is a specialized component of the Citizen Corps, a federally-sponsored program that encourages volunteerism. The national program was officially launched in July 2002. The MRC uses volunteers to help prepare and respond to disaster situations as well as serve other health care needs of our community. The MRC supplements the existing community health care resources.

Do I have to be a health care professional to volunteer?

No. There is a need for all types of volunteers, both licensed health care professionals and support staff.

Do MRC volunteers only help in disaster time (during emergency situations)?

Although the MRC volunteers are ready to respond to disasters or emergencies, part of the MRC program's mission is to foster disaster preparedness. 

MRC volunteers also are called to help during non-emergency times.

What is the age of MRC volunteers?

Volunteers 18 years and older are welcome including retirees.

How is training conducted? 
  • Training will depend upon your role within the MRC. Basic Life Support (CPR) certification is highly recommended for all participants. 
  • Training is offered at each monthly meeting as the second half of the meeting.
  • FEMA online courses are also available and encouraged.

Will I be paid?
Local efforts are strictly volunteer.

What is the time commitment?
There is a monthly meeting followed by a training program for a total of 2 hours that we encourage all members to attend. Then there are many community events that MRC will be invited to participate and you may volunteer for any of those that you are qualified for.

Is there travel involved? 
Some travel to local events are expected.

Do I have to live in Lancaster County?
No. We serve the Southeast Nebraska region.

How do I become a member? 
Use the contact page to contact a leader or look at the calendar and come to a meeting to meet other volunteers and become part of MRC.