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Assessment of the Medical Reserve Corps Program

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Appendix A: MRC Evaluation Questions, Measures, and Data Sources to Assess MRC Goals

Table A-1. MRC Evaluation Goals, Questions, and Measures2

MRC Goal Evaluation Question Measure/Indicator
Goal 1: Demonstrate whether medical response capacity can be strengthened through MRC units consisting of a broad range of medical and health professionals. How do MRC units complement existing community plans for emergency preparedness?
  • Degree of integration vs. duplication with community plans.
Is the MRC Plan of Action consistent with community needs and risks?
  • Degree of match between planned activities and community needs.
Is the size and diversity of the MRC unit sufficient to build medical response capacity?
  • Size of MRC unit.
  • Professional diversity of MRC unit.
What types of activation strategies have been most effective?
  • Cross-training activities.
  • Communication strategies.
  • Debriefing activities.
Goal 2: Demonstrate whether surge capacity can be created to handle emergency situations that have significant consequences for the health of the population. How are MRC activities integrated into existing emergency preparedness and response programs?
  • Cross-training exercises.
  • Information sharing.
  • Number and type of co-sponsored events.
Do MRC volunteers and partners understand activation procedures?
  • Degree of understanding.
Goal 3: Demonstrate whether the MRC enables current and retired health professionals to obtain additional training needed to work effectively and safely during emergency situations. How has MRC involvement enhanced the skills and competencies of volunteers?
  • Number and type of training activities.
  • Availability/accessibility of training activities.
  • Quality of training activities.
How have MRC units supported volunteer participation?
  • Recruitment activities.
  • Screening activities.
  • Retention and turnover.
  • Verification of credentials.
  • Addressing liability issues.
  • Timing and location of meetings.
  • Innovative use of technology.
  • Internal communication protocols.
Goal 4: Demonstrate whether the MRC approach provides an effective organizational framework with a command and control system within which appropriately trained and credentialed volunteers can use their skills in health and medicine. Have the MRCs developed a plan of action with explicit goals, objectives, and action steps?
  • Documented action plan.
Do stakeholders understand the purpose and goal of the MRC?
  • Shared understanding of purpose.
Does the MRC leadership structure support effective functioning?
  • Leadership strengths.
  • Leadership weaknesses.
  • Unit cohesion.
Have systems to track and update information on volunteers, contacts, and partners been effective?
  • Tracking system:
    • Status
    • Strengths
    • Weaknesses
What are the challenges to internal coordination?
  • Lack of resources.
  • Lack of personnel, expert skills.
Goal 5: Determine whether the MRC approach facilitates coordination of local citizen volunteer services in health and medicine with other response programs of the community/county/State during an emergency. How have MRC units coordinated with external partners?
  • Size/scope of partnerships.
  • Number and type of memoranda of agreement.
  • Number and type of champions.
How have MRCs addressed barriers to external coordination?
  • Negotiation
  • Conflict resolution
Goal 6: Determine whether the MRC approach provides cadres of health professionals who contribute to the resolution of public health problems and needs throughout the year. How have MRCs supported other public health needs?
  • Number and types of public health activities.

2. From the Evaluation Plan prepared by RTI International, December 2006. Some of the evaluation questions were modified or combined during the evaluation.

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