octors and other healthcare professionals in western Iowa are being recruited for a volunteer medical reserve corps. In the event of a large-scale emergency, Omaha Mayor Mike Fahey says local first-responders can be quickly overwhelmed. He points to last week’s bombing in Madrid, Spain. With such mass casualties, he says the Spaniards did not have enough ambulances or personnel to triage the people, which he says is what the medical reserve corps is all about. The corps will be coordinated by the United Way of the Midlands, and will include part of eastern Nebraska as well as Harrison and Pottawatamie Counties in western Iowa. Jamie Moore, the agency’s V.P. for volunteer community services, says if there’s a major disaster, there will be all kinds of needs. If there’s a major disaster, she says they’ll need nurses, physicians, pharmacists, veterinarians, dentists, EMT’s, med techs, counselors, therapists, psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, drug and alcohol counselors, and clergy — “the whole gamut.” The United Way will recruit and train volunteers, and process them, sending people where they can best be used to help in the event of a disaster. There will also be a system in place to handle people who just show up and offer to help. The corps covers a five county area—Douglas, Sarpy, and Cass counties in Nebraska, and Harrison and Pottawattamie counties in Iowa.
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