Exceptional Family Member Program

Exceptional Families. Exceptional Service.

Exceptional Family Member Program on U.S. Army MWR

The U.S. Army Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation (the G9 Division of the U.S. Army Installation Management Command, known as Army MWR) manages programs and services that support readiness and resilience for Soldiers and Families. Its work enhances the lives of Soldiers, Families, Reservists, National Guard members, DoD Civilians, Retirees and the entire U.S. Army community.  Family and MWR Programs are delivered primarily through a local garrison or installation. To learn more about the resources available at your local garrison, visit the Army MWR website.

About Exceptional Family Member Program

The Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) is a mandatory enrollment program that works with other military and civilian agencies to provide comprehensive and coordinated community support, housing, educational, medical, and personnel services to Families with special needs. Soldiers on active duty enroll in the program when they have a Family member with a physical, emotional, developmental, or intellectual disorder requiring specialized services so their needs can be considered in the military personnel assignment process. Family members must be screened and enrolled, if eligible, when the Soldier is on assignment instructions to an OCONUS area for which command sponsorship/Family member travel is authorized, and the Soldier elects to serve the accompanied tour. This screening consists of medical records review for all Family members, and developmental screening for all children 72 months of age and younger. Soldiers are responsible for keeping their EFMP enrollment current as exceptional Family member (EFM) conditions change or at least every three years, whichever comes first. For more information about EFMP, contact your installation EFMP manager at your Army Community Service (ACS) office.

EFMP Newsletter & Benefits

The EFMP Newsletter issued by the Department of Defense is entitled "The Exceptional Advocate". It includes helpful information and resources. Click here to view the latest EFMP Newsletter.
The EFMP, working in concert with other military and civilian agencies, is designed to provide a comprehensive, coordinated, multi-agency approach for community support, housing, medical, educational and personnel services to Families with special needs. Click here to view the full Benefits Fact Sheet.

EFMP Registration

The Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) was created in the early 1980's to support Military Families with a special needs Family member. The program has grown tremendously over the years and is now a comprehensive, coordinated multi-agency program helping meet the needs of the Exceptional Family Member (EFM). The Army Medical Department (AMEDD) EFMP web address was launched earlier this year to establish a standard registration process for Military Families and guidance for maneuvering through the enrollment procedures. Families have access to concise information about MEDCOM EFMP support. Click on the links below to access the EFMP Quick Reference Guide and AMEDD Support website for access to Enrollment, Screening, Medical Care in Europe, and any necessary Forms related to the Exceptional Family Member Program. Click here to enroll for EFMP on the official AMEDD Support website. EFMP Quick Reference Guide.pdf

Respite Care Program

The Respite Care Program is a component of EFMP that provides a temporary rest period for Family members responsible for regular care of persons with disabilities. Care may be provided in the EFMP respite care user’s home and Child, Youth and School Services facilities. Respite care is important because it decreases Family stress, increases Family stability and reduces costly out-of-home placements, thereby contributing to Soldier readiness. Respite care services can be accessed through the central contract by contacting your local ACS EFMP office.

System Navigators

Systems Navigators are Army Community Service EFMP staff members located on most Army installations. They are trained and knowledgeable about the systems of care used by Families with special needs. The primary role of a Systems Navigator is to navigate Families through the available systems of care.
  • Identify EFM and Family strengths and needs.
  • Help identify and prioritize EFM and Family goals.
  • Develop a Family Service Plan to reach goals.
  • Make referrals to required services.
  • Provide information about disabilities or medical conditions of concern.
  • Identify support groups and social activities.
  • Strengthen Family's ability to advocate for EFM.
System Navigator Site Map.pdf

EFMP: Frequently Asked Questions

A1: The EFMP is a mandatory enrollment program that works with other military and civilian agencies to provide comprehensive and coordinated community support, housing, educational, medical, and personnel services to Families with special needs.
A2: An EFM is a Family member (child or adult) with any physical, emotional, developmental, or intellectual disorder that requires special treatment, therapy, education, training, or counseling.
a. The following Soldiers with EFMs (children and adults) will enroll in the EFMP: - 1) Active Army. - 2) U.S. Army Reserve (USAR) Soldiers in the USAR Active Guard Reserve (AGR) Program. Mobilized and deployed Soldiers are not eligible for enrollment in EFMP. - 3) Army National Guard AGR personnel serving under authority of Title 10, United States Code and Title 32, United States Code. b. Department of the Army civilian employees do not enroll in the program. However, they must identify dependent children with special education and medically related service needs and Family members with medical needs each time they process for an assignment to a location outside the United States where Family member travel is authorized at Government expense.
A4: The Soldier contacts the nearest Army medical treatment facility EFMP point of contact to begin the assessment process and obtain the enrollment forms. Once the forms are completed, they are forwarded to the appropriate regional medical command for coding. The regional medical command enrolls eligible Active Army Soldiers in EFMP. They notify Army National Guard and Reserve personnel agencies of eligible AGR Soldiers who then enroll them in the program.
A5: Enrollment in EFMP does not adversely affect selection for promotion, schools, or assignment. Information concerning enrollment in EFMP or any of the data used in the program is not made available to selection boards.
A6: Enrollment allows assignment managers at Army personnel agencies to consider the documented medical and special education needs of EFMs in the assignment process. When possible, Soldiers are assigned to an area where the medical and special education needs of their EFM can be met. This will depend on a valid personnel requirement for the Soldier’s grade, specialty and eligibility for the tour. All Soldiers are still eligible for worldwide assignments.
A7: Special education needs are only considered in assignments outside the United States. Assignments within our 50 States and Trust Territories are not based on the educational needs of children. Every local school system must obey public laws regarding the provision of special education.
A8: Army Community Services include information and referral, advocacy, support groups, respite care and relocation assistance.
Last modified: April 5, 2018 - 7:12 pm UTC