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New National Website Cuts Red Tape for Volunteer Health Professionals

To make volunteering in an emergency easier for health professionals, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response launched a national website this week for the Emergency System for Advance Registration of Volunteer Health Professionals (ESAR-VHP).

ESAR-VHP is a national network of state-based programs that verifies the identity, licenses, and credentials of health professionals before an emergency happens. The HHS national ESAR-VHP website provides a single point of entry for potential volunteers, connecting them with each state’s ESAR-VHP program, so health professionals can volunteer quickly without losing time waiting to have their credentials verified.

All health professionals are encouraged to visit the ESAR-VHP website, and follow the steps to register with their state system. Health professionals include doctors, nurses, dentists, veterinarians, medical technologists, clinical social workers, medical records technicians, and mental health counselors.

Registering with ESAR-VHP does not mean that health professionals are obligated to serve. Once registered, participants can opt in or out when contacted for volunteer service.

ESAR-VHP helps communities, states, and the nation become prepared for disasters. For more information on ESAR-VHP, visit www.phe.gov/esarvhp.

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