Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is the Connecticut Radiation Professional Volunteer Program (CT-RPVP)?
The Connecticut Radiation Professional Volunteer Program is a way to identify, enroll and train active or retired radiation professionals, as well as others professionals with disaster response experience to conduct population monitoring activities in the event of a radiological- or nuclear-related accident. The Yale New Haven Center of Excellence for Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response administers the program for the State of Connecticut Department of Public Health.

Q. Why does Connecticut need licensed healthcare professional volunteers?
In the event of a radiological or nuclear incident, hundreds or even thousands of residents may become contaminated with radiological materials. Screening large numbers of people will quickly overwhelm local and state agencies. Radiation response volunteers who are proficient in monitoring the population for radiological contamination will substantially enhance Connecticut’s capacity to respond to radiological and nuclear disasters

Q. Who is eligible to volunteer in the program?
Health physicists, radiation safety technicians, nuclear medicine technicians, radiation oncology technicians, radiation safety officers, medical physicists, medical professionals are eligible to join the Program, as are others familiar in radiation safety or emergency response practices (e.g., emergency medical services (EMS) personnel, medical reserve corps (MRC) volunteers, firefighters, and police officers). Individuals with significant experience but who not currently working in the field (e.g., retired) are welcomed.

Q. How does the Connecticut Radiation professional Volunteer Program registration process work?
Interested volunteers provide personal contact information and will be asked to complete a self-assessment of relevant experience. This information will become part of a central, secure database (Connecticut Emergency Credentialing Program (CT-ECP) database) that can be accessed by the Connecticut Department of Public Health, and local and state public health agencies during a large-scale radiological or nuclear emergency. In such an event, the Connecticut Department of Public Health may reach out to volunteers who have the skills and qualifications, and who have undergone a pre-event education and training class to determine if they are available and willing to assist with population monitoring at community reception centers.

Q. What if I am called and am unable or unwilling to help?
When you are called to volunteer, you can make a decision about your availability at that time. You always retain the right to decline for any reason. Keep in mind that participating in an emergency response can be physically and emotionally draining, the response can separate you from your family for extended periods of time and provides no monetary compensation.

Q. What about my family and my job?
Volunteers are required to coordinate their volunteer time with the needs of their family, their employers and any other non-paid obligations relative to an emergency response (e.g., EMS, police, fire, or the Disaster Medical Assistance Team).

Q. What will my role be in a large-scale disaster or public health emergency?
Every attempt will be made to match your skills and qualifications with your responsibilities during a radiological or nuclear emergency. On occasion, however, you may be asked to assist with activities that are less challenging than your usual professional activities. However, you should never be requested to or accept responsibility for an activity or assignment that is outside your scope of practice.

Q. Do I have professional liability and workers compensation protection?
Volunteers enrolled in the CT-RPVP and who are deployed within the borders of the state during a governor declared state of emergency or public health emergency (i.e. radiological or nuclear incident) are eligible for state sponsored liability and workers compensation coverage.

Q. Are there circumstances when I would not be eligible for professional liability and workers compensation protection?
Volunteers enrolled in the program are not eligible for state sponsored professional liability and/or workers compensation when:
• Actions are deemed to be the result of “willful or wanton misconduct” (Substitute Bill 6676, Sec.10, CT General Assembly, January 2003)
• Actions are not part of the official volunteer responsibilities requested at the time of deployment with the CT-RPVP, by the incident commander or by the incident commander’s designate
• Actions are taken independently from the CT-RPVP as a “self-deployed” volunteer

Q. What training is available?
Volunteers enrolled in the program are required to complete a brief online training course and attend an instructor-led class (pre-event training). Additional courses may be required for some volunteers. Also, at the time of the disaster, each volunteer will receive appropriate just-in-time training to refresh the knowledge gained during the pre-event training. Volunteers are also encouraged to participate in disaster response drills and exercises conducted by their communities, the Department of Public Health and other organizations around the state that evaluate emergency management plans and protocols.

Q. How do I register?
Volunteers can register by going to to provide contact information and to complete the on-line self-assessment. This information will be included to the statewide volunteer database (CT-ECP).

Q. How will I be contacted in an emergency?
When you register, you will be asked for information about the best ways to contact you during an emergency. Please be sure to keep this information current by returning to the program website to update your information!

Q. How will I update my information?
When you register, you will receive a secure and unique volunteer identification number. You will need this number to re-enter the website to get general program information, register for the program’s online training courses or to update your contact information.

Q. Who will have access to this information?
Your information will be contained within a central, secure database administered for the State of Connecticut Department of Public Health by the Yale New Haven Health System Center for Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Response. Your information will ONLY be used to engage you in activities related to the CT-RPVP, including recruitment for participation in a disaster drill or exercise, to provide you with program information or to request your assistance at the time of a radiological or nuclear emergency. Under no circumstances will this information be sold to or otherwise shared with other entities.

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