As New Jersey continues to roll out its COVID-19 vaccine program, there's an "all-hands on deck" approach to enlisting qualified personnel to administer doses.

Retired health care professionals have been urged to return to the field throughout the pandemic.

In late spring, the need included testing for novel coronavirus.

As of January, the call has again intensified, as retired health care professionals with vaccination skills are most in-demand.

Physicians, nurses, pharmacists, paramedics and "anyone who is certified to inoculate" have been urged to sign up with their County Medical Reserve Corps, according to state Department of Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli.

For professionals looking to reactivate licenses, the Division of Consumer Affairs has directed them to DCA's emergency retiree reactivation program, which waives all fees and most requirements.

Eligible health care professionals whose licenses have been inactive for five years or less can immediately reinstate their license for the length of the current state of emergency.

The New Jersey Medical Reserve Corps is a network of community-based, locally organized units, which typical includes nearly 5,000 volunteers statewide.

There are 24 MRC units around the state, with at least one in each county — among nearly 1,000 units across the country to support community needs during wide-scale public health emergencies.

Nearly 208,000 volunteers serve in MRC units in all 50 states — plus Washington DC, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, according to the Hunterdon County Medical Reserve Corps.

Medical Reserve Corps members are used during public health emergencies, including pandemics, and can help provide emergency medical services, vaccine distribution, and assist with logistics, a description on the Middlesex County government website says.

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