Every military family deserves superior health care tailored to their specific needs. There is a wealth of support programs for service members to seek out for their families. The Exceptional Family Members Program, designed for military families, includes support for dependents with special educational and medical needs.

What is the EFMP?

The EFMP is a resource offered to active duty service members who have spouses, children or adult dependents with special needs at home. The Department of Defense (DoD) provides this service.

There are three core components to EFMP:

  • Enrolling a family member with special needs.
  • Educating the military family on which projected duty station offers services for your family needs.
  • Assisting the military family in accessing those programs and services.

But what is a special need?

What are some examples of a special need?

Special needs include, but are not limited to:

  • Multiple sclerosis.
  • Asthma.
  • Diabetes.
  • Attention deficit disorder.

Chronic conditions — including behavioral health conditions — that are treated by a medical specialist generally constitute a special need.

Why should you use the EFMP?

Active Duty Service members with special needs dependents face unique challenges in caring for their loved ones. Those challenges can become compounded when relocating. With the EFMP, the armed forces hope to ease our service member’s burden by offering support to their families so they can receive the care they deserve.

Are EFMP services available everywhere?

EFMP resources vary by location and may not be available in overseas or remote stations. This is why it’s vital to contact the nearest EFMP support office first to make sure you know what services are offered.

All military families can take advantage of Family Member Travel Screening (FMTS). Wherever you’re deployed, your family will have the resources they require, with careful consideration as to what your dependents’ needs are and what would be available to them.

The EFMP is not limited by which branch of the military you’re serving in; all branches offer the program.

"The appearance of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement."“The appearance of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.”

How do you enroll in the EFMP?

Enrollment in the EFMP is mandatory for all active duty service members, and there are different ways to enroll if you’re not on active duty. Methods of enrolling and their applications are available in this quick guide.

The FMTS process includes a medical and educational screening for you and your family. This helps the support office identify what specific needs your family has. If those needs include anything that could apply to the EFMP, you should enroll in the program.

If you’re in the National Guard or Reserves, you might also be eligible for the EFMP, though you’ll need to contact your particular branch for instructions regarding enrollment in each.

What does “family support” include in the EFMP?

Family support includes, though is not limited to:

  • Non-clinical case management, which includes Individualized service plans.
  • Information on local schools and early intervention.
  • Outreach and education.
  • Support for transferring EVMP benefits from one location to another.

There’s no reason not to use the EFMP if you qualify

If you’re a military family that includes someone with special medical or educational needs, there’s no reason not to take advantage of the EFMP. The program gives service members peace of mind when deployed for active duty and their families the resources they can use to help meet those special needs.

You can access the EFMP family support by calling your local Military and Family Support Center or Military OneSource at 800-342-9647. Ask them for a referral to a special needs consultant.