Mississippi health professionals who have not already signed up with our Volunteers in Preparedness Registry (VIPR) can register with MSDH for health-related service in emergencies. For more information, see the links below.
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Health and Emergency Volunteers
Education & Training
We offer free volunteer training throughout the state for all registered and potential volunteers. The trainings are free to the public, and CEUs are offered. Training is open to anyone who is interested.
VIPR Update is published quarterly, and keeps volunteers up-to-date on events, news and information for the emergency volunteering community.
Questions & Answers about Volunteering
- Do I have to register through VIPR in order to volunteer to work in an emergency setting?
Yes. MS - VIPR is Mississippi's Emergency System for Advance Registration of Volunteer Health Professionals (ESAR-VIP) and allows for pre-credentialing to hasten the process in making deployment assignments.
- What disciplines can register through VIPR?
Most health care disciplines can register through VIPR. A complete list is available (to users) during the registration process.
- Do I need certain qualifications?
A current active professional license in good-standing or "privilege to practice" in Mississippi will be needed.
Nurses and Nurse Practitioners may go to the MS Board of Nursing website at www.msbn.state.ms.us for information related to licensure verification and practice including information on the fifty state Emergency Management Assistance Compact.
Physicians may go to the MS Board of Medical Licensure site at www.msbml.state.ms.us for information from the Board regarding physician licensure for this event.
- How will I know if I am accepted as a volunteer? Will I be notified of my acceptance?
Once you register you are tentatively accepted and at the time of deployment your credentials will be verified with your discipline's Mississippi Regulatory Agency (or licensing body). You will be notified of your acceptance at the time you are contacted to discuss your acceptance of deployment/ assignment.
- When and where will I be deployed?
VIPR will accept formal requests for volunteer help from impacted/ affected areas after the hurricane has landed and the need can be assessed. Efforts will be made to match the request of both the affected area and the volunteer where possible. Priority for placement is given to the request of the impacted/ affected area.
In some circumstances, volunteers will be asked to go to help evacuee shelters prior to hurricane landfall.
- How long will I be deployed?
The average length of assignment is 3-5 days. In some cases it is shorter, in some it is longer.
- What if I change my mind or I can't go?
Registering to volunteer through VIPR is not binding. If you are unable to go or just change your mind, you can simply decline the request.
- Where will I be sent? Do I have a choice in where I am sent?
A volunteer may ask for a certain assignment. However priority is to try to match requests from the disaster area with services that THEY need or are short of at a certain time.
Possible assignments may be a hospital, a shelter, or in some cases a health facility. Again the experience and ability of the volunteer is considered.
- If I am deployed what credentials will I need to bring?
A photo ID or photo driver's license will be needed at arrival. Credentials will have been checked through VIPR in advance. Confirmation of what to bring will be made at time of contact with the volunteer during request for deployment.
- What else should I bring?
A list to remind you of personal items you may want to bring can be found in the Disaster Supply Kit Go-Bag
You will not need to bring medical supplies or medications for persons other than yourself.
DO NOT BRING WEAPONS, ALCOHOL, OR ILLICIT DRUGS.
- What if I have further questions?
Further questions you may have can be answered at the time you are contacted regarding assignment/ deployment.
You may check back later for further updates on this MSDH website as they are available.
Thank you for volunteering!