Lake County Medical Reserve Corps Seeks Volunteers

Lake County Health Department
Posted3/18/2014 3:58 PM

Individuals seeking a volunteer opportunity that includes free training for widespread emergency situations should consider joining the Lake County Medical Reserve Corps and participating in training this month and next. A medical background is not required for those who want to volunteer.

Affiliated with the Lake County Health Department's Emergency Response program, the Medical Reserve Corps is in place to support the existing health care system in situations of public health emergencies. For instance, volunteers assisted with the H1N1 outbreak in Lake County and 10 volunteers from the Lake County Medical Reserve Corps traveled to Louisiana to assist after Hurricane Katrina in what was the first national activation of Medical Reserve Corps volunteers.

"We are asking people to step up and help their community. If you want to volunteer, we will find a job for you," said Chet Splitt, MRC Coordinator. Locally there are 375 members and the goal is to double that number.

Volunteers must be at least 18 years old and a resident of Lake County or one of the adjacent counties. In case of a large-scale emergency wherein medication needs to be distributed, volunteers and their immediate family will receive the medication first. Medical or non-medical students who meet the age and residency requirement are encouraged to be volunteers as well.

Volunteers are asked to complete less than 10 hours of training a year and each person is required to attend one four-hour exercise to practice what they learn. The training includes learning how to assist in distributing medication to all residents of Lake County within 48 hours during a public health emergency.

The Training schedule is as follows:

March 20

6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Orientation

7 p.m. to 9 p.m. PODS (Points of Distribution Training)

College of Lake County Southlake Campus - V324

1120 South Milwaukee Avenue

Vernon Hills

April 3

6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Orientation

7 p.m. to 9 p.m. PODS (Points of Distribution Training)

College of Lake County Grayslake Campus -- Room C002

19351 West Washington Street


Those who volunteer will not only be better prepared at home and work in case of an emergency, but they also will be part of a nationally-recognized group of volunteers. In 2012, the Lake County Medical Reserve Corps was recognized as an Active Partner in the Illinois Heart Rescue Project which focuses on forming community, emergency management system (EMS) and hospital partnerships across the state to measure and improve cardiac arrest survival. In 2010, the group received the 2010 Mentor Award from the Office of Civilian Volunteer Medical Reserve Corps for efforts in collaboration with the Southeast Wisconsin Medical Reserve Corps.

Lake County Medical Reserve Corps volunteers can also spend anywhere from 2 to 20 hours each year representing the Medical Reserve Corps and educating the public at public events such as presentations to senior groups, the Lake County Fair, the Kids 1st Health Fair and the College of Lake County Fair.

There are 74 Medical Reserve Corps units in Illinois and 991 across the United States with more than 4,000 members.

For more information about the Medical Reserve Corps, visit the website at:

Questions about how to volunteer or the training may be directed to Chet Splitt at or call him at (847) 377-8358.