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California has a program, the Disaster Service Workers Program, that is the source of workers’ compensation for governmental volunteers. This program, subject to funding by the Legislature, would be the source of workers’ compensation in disaster circumstances for those government volunteers who may be injured in the course of their volunteer service. In order to be eligible for this program, a volunteer must be enrolled as a Disaster Service Worker. This involves registration and taking a loyalty oath. We intend for our Napa County volunteers to be properly registered and have the oath given them as part of this program. For other questions regarding worker's compensation, contact us at 707-253-4199.
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Registering is a simple three step process. Get Web page directions or download a PDF version of instructions (including screen shots) on how to register as a Napa County Medical Volunteer.
People volunteer for many reasons. And, being healthcare professionals, we often look for ways to help our own community. Joining this effort offers you several real opportunities:
While undoubtedly all of us would be eager to help our communities during a disaster, joining a volunteer program before a disaster strikes allows Napa County to know you:
This information will allow Napa County Public Health to quickly match you to an appropriate volunteer role. In addition, by officially being a member of the Napa County Medical Reserve Corps Unit or Medical Volunteers, you will be covered for liability and workers compensation during a response and / or trainings in which you participate. Register to become a volunteer.
We understand that many health professionals have strong relationships with the place or places that they work. Many times this will mean that you have committed to a particular response that your facility is preparing. We fully understand that your first priority is to your own job and your own workplace. The purpose of this program is not to diminish the resources of any facility.
Rather, it is to increase the resources available to all locations. That’s why, if you’re not already committed, we want you to be able to help our efforts to provide healthcare throughout the county. Also, you may not be able to get to your workplace (due to flood or quake damage); registering as a volunteer allows you to help at alternate sites. Additionally, some emergency responses will take place outside of healthcare facilities, and will not impact those facilities. Contact us at 707-253-4199 for further information.
You always have the option of declining any training or deployment opportunities offered. Trainings and deployment opportunities hosted by Napa County are open to all volunteers (some may have prerequisites), and you can sign up for those opportunities that are of interest to you. Members can also indicate in their profile their response/deployment preferences to allow us to better match you to opportunities. For more questions regarding responding, contact us at 707-253-4199.
There are many protections in place for health professionals who volunteer in an emergency situation. There are both federal and state laws that are designed to protect volunteers from liability when they are responding to an emergency. While there are differences among the laws, it can be said generally that healthcare professional volunteers are protected when the acts they engaged in were within their scope of practice, within their responsibilities as a volunteer, and not caused by willful or criminal misconduct. Contact us at 707-253-4199 for any further questions.
Absolutely! Your service is invaluable. During an emergency the entire healthcare system is at risk for being stressed. Many professionals with particular skills may have to be shifted from their regular job to another. Also, many professionals may not be able to make it to their regular place of employment. In such a situation, any licensed professional who is willing and able to volunteer will be able to make an extremely important contribution to the community. Right now, we are limiting our recruitment those with active licenses. But, if you are retired and your license is still active, you are more than welcome to join us and contribute to the good of your community. Visit our registration page or contact us at 707-253-4199 for more information.
We recognize that all of us have lives and families and few are capable of an unlimited commitment in a disaster situation. That is why when you register for this program, we ask you what you are comfortable with as far as a commitment of time and energy. We will make every effort to match your skills and preferences to the needs presented by the emergency to which we are all responding. And, as we mentioned above, it is not our intent to steal you away from other volunteer or work commitments you may have during the emergency.