Exceptional Family Member Program enrollment is mandatory for active duty sponsors and can be initiated in several ways:
- The screening process can be set in motion during routine medical care appointments or by referral from the school or key community personnel.
- Screening occurs during in-, out- and reassignment processing if sponsors indicate that they have or suspect they have an EFM.
- All family members must be screened before approval of command sponsorship for locations OCONUS.
As soon as a condition is identified, active duty sponsors must contact the nearest Air Force military treatment facility to talk with the EFMP-Medical staff, who will provide the necessary forms with instructions on having them completed by a medical practitioner or educational authority.
Special Needs Coordinators are the points of contact for initiating enrollment in the EFMP. SNCs are clinical officers or civilian equivalents, and may be reached through the EFMP-M office in the MTF. SNCs evaluate medical and/or educational information but do not release the family member’s health or educational information to AFPC when initiating EFMP enrollment. Additionally, they assist in linking families with medical care after they arrive at the new duty location.
If the family member’s condition(s) meet enrollment criteria, an assignment limitation code (“Q”) is entered in the active duty sponsor’s electronic personnel record. The sponsor is then known as “Q-coded,” and medical and educational authorities can now consider special needs when sponsors are projected for assignments.
Airmen enrolled in EFMP are responsible for keeping their EFMP-M medical and/or special education documentation current, and for notifying the EFMP-M office of any changes in their family member’s needs or their contact information. A review is required as the EFM’s condition changes or within six months of family travel or a PCS move.
Enrollment in EFMP remains in effect until the medical or special education needs no longer meet criteria, until the Airman is separated from active duty, or until the family member is no longer a military dependent. Disenrollment, or removal of the Q-code, is accomplished by presenting the SNC at the MTF with documentation that indicates one or more of these provisions have been met.
Sponsors who are enrolled are still subject to worldwide assignment, temporary duty, deployment, and like any other Airman, may be called upon to serve an unaccompanied tour.