Emergency Volunteers


Volunteers Needed in Case of Disaster

Volunteers in Preparedness Registry (VIPR) is a database maintained by the Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH) that contains contact and credential information on health care professionals who have registered in advance to be volunteers in case of a disaster. Nurses are greatly needed.

If you are interested in volunteering in advance or during this or any emergent event, please register at http://volunteer.msdh.state.ms.us, or for additional information about VIPR and volunteerism, please contact the Mississippi State Department of Health, Office of Emergency Planning and Response at 601-576-7680 or 1-866-458-4948.

All volunteers are welcomed and appreciated. Even though this may be an emergency situation, we are asking that you practice within the scope of your license and according to generally accepted standards of nursing practice.

How to Verify Licensure

To verify the status of a nursing license, scroll down until you see “Online Services” on the left side of our website. Click “Online License Verification“ and a new pop up window will appear. Click the “Continue” to begin. You will need to enter either a “license number and last name” or the “last four digits of social security number and last name.” All active Mississippi RN licenses expire in even numbered years on the 31st of December (i.e., 2014, 2016, etc...).


Emergency Management Assistance Compact

Mississippi is a member of the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC) which is an agreement among all states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, to provide assistance across state lines when a disaster occurs. EMAC provides that “in managing any emergency disaster that is duly declared by the governor of the affected state, whether arising from natural disaster… Whenever any person holds a license, certificate, or other permit issued by any party state, such person shall be deemed licensed, certified, or permitted by the state requesting assistance to render aid involving such skill to meet a declared emergency or disaster, subject to such limitations and conditions as the governor of the requesting state may prescribe by executive order or otherwise.”

Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs)

APRNs entering the state to volunteer must be able to provide evidence of a collaborative relationship and a current protocol with a physician that can be accessible at all times. If an APRN comes from a state which does not require a collaborative relationship, he or she will need to form a collaborative relationship and obtain an approved protocol with a physician before she practices as an APRN in Mississippi.

Recovering Nurse Program/Compliance

If you have a restricted Mississippi nursing license and are concerned about adhering to restrictions, please understand that the Board of Nursing expects full compliance with any and all restrictions placed on your license. In the event that you do not have telephone service or a collection site for urine drug screens, make every attempt to find appropriate alternatives. Document all steps you have taken to comply with your restrictions. Emergency situations will be reviewed with current conditions in mind. If you need to contact other nurses in your area, please utilize your nurse support group.

Should you find yourself involved in activities to rescue, evacuate or protect citizens, residents, or patients, be mindful of your restrictions. Be certain that you adhere to generally accepted standards of nursing practice, which would include acting to preserve life and prevent injury.

Department of Health Emergency Shelters - Shelters of Last Resort

The Mississippi Nursing Practice Law and Rules and Regulations require nurses in shelter settings to provide care which adheres to the law and to the applicable standards of care. Medical orders concerning administration of medications at home which are evidenced by pill bottles or IV bags etc. should be followed as they would in the home. If interventions other than those covered by existing medical prescriptions/orders are necessary or a question concerning existing medical prescriptions/orders arise, the nurse should provide necessary first aid and contact medical control through the mechanisms which are established by the State Department of Health. If a nurse is assigned to a shelter in which people are taking refuge at the last minute, the nurse should perform emergency first aid, follow applicable written protocols and contact medical control through the established mechanisms as soon as possible.

Other websites to view:

State of Mississippi:
Mississippi Emergency Management:
State Department of Health:
Volunteers in Preparedness Registry:
American Red Cross: