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Office of the Civilian Volunteer Medical Reserve Corps - Sponsored by The Office of the United States Surgeon General
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About the Medical Reserve Corps

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OCVMRC Strategic Plan 2009–2010

The OCVMRC Strategic Plan 2009–2010 represents the direction of the Office of Civilian Volunteer Medical Reserve Corps (OCVMRC) for the years 2009–2010. This plan aligns OCVMRC with the plans and priorities of the Office of the Surgeon General (OSG), the Office of Public Health and Science (OPHS), and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR), as well as the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).


The mission of the Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) is to improve the health and safety of communities across the country by organizing and utilizing public health, medical and other volunteers.


  • The MRC was founded after President Bush’s 2002 State of the Union Address, in which he asked all Americans to volunteer in support of their country. It is a partner program with Citizen Corps, a national network of volunteers dedicated to ensuring hometown security.  
  • MRC units are community-based and function as a way to locally organize and utilize volunteers who want to donate their time and expertise to prepare for and respond to emergencies and promote healthy living throughout the year. MRC volunteers supplement existing emergency and public health resources.
  • MRC volunteers include medical and public health professionals such as physicians, nurses, pharmacists, dentists, veterinarians, and epidemiologists. Many community members—interpreters, chaplains, office workers, legal advisors, and others—can fill key support positions.
  • MRC units are provided specific areas to target that strengthen the public health infrastructure of their communities by the U.S. Surgeon General. These are outlined priorities for the health of individuals, and the nation as a whole, which also serve as a guide to the MRC. The overarching goal is to improve health literacy, and in support of this, he wants us to work towards increasing disease prevention, eliminating health disparities, and improving public health preparedness.
  • MRC volunteers can choose to support communities in need nationwide. When the southeast was battered by hurricanes in 2004, MRC volunteers in the affected areas and beyond helped communities by filling in at local hospitals, assisting their neighbors at local shelters, and providing first aid to those injured by the storms. During this 2-month period, more than 30 MRC units worked as part of the relief efforts, including those whose volunteers were called in from across the country to assist the American Red Cross (ARC) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

    During the 2005 Hurricane Season, MRC members provided support for ARC health services, mental health and shelter operations. MRC members also supported the HHS response and recovery efforts by staffing special needs shelters, Community Health Centers and health clinics, and assisting health assessment teams in the Gulf Coast region. More than 1,500 MRC members were willing to deploy outside their local jurisdiction on optional missions to the disaster-affected areas with their state agencies, the ARC, and HHS. Of these, almost 200 volunteers from 25 MRC units were activated by HHS, and more than 400 volunteers from more than 80 local MRC units were activateded to support ARC disaster operations in Gulf Coast areas.


The OCVMRC is headquartered in the Office of the U.S. Surgeon General. It functions as a clearinghouse for information and best practices to help communities establish, implement, and maintain MRC units nationwide. The OCVMRC sponsors an annual leadership conference, hosts a Web site, and coordinates with local, state, regional, and national organizations and agencies to help communities achieve their local visions for public health and emergency preparedness.

Program Staff

MRC Program Director
Robert J. Tosatto, R.Ph., M.P.H., M.B.A.
Captain, U.S. Public Health Service

MRC Senior Program Officer, MRC Program Operations
Brad Austin, M.P.H., FACHE
Captain, U.S. Public Health Service

MRC Senior Program Officer, MRC Deployment Operations
Narayan Nair, M.D.
Commander, U.S. Public Health Service

MRC Program Officer, MRC Program Operations
Dean R. Trombley, M.A., CCC-SLP
Lieutenant Commander, U.S. Public Health Service

MRC Program Officer, MRC Program Operations
Samuel Schaffzin, M.P.A.
Lieutenant, U.S. Public Health Service

MRC Program Officer, MRC Deployment Operations
Shakirat Apelogun
Lieutenant Junior Grade, U.S. Public Health Service

MRC Technical Assistance Coordinator
Elizabeth H. Fitch, M.P.A.

MRC Public Information Officer
Grace M. Middleton

MRC Junior Communication Specialist
Dagayla Burks

MRC Regional Coordinators

MRC State Coordinators

Regional Health Administrators

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Last Updated on 7/7/2009

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