Special Needs Program: new category policy, assignment coordination


Written by Dr. Marta Denchfield, Special Needs Program Manager

Approximately three thousand Coast Guard active duty members are enrolled in the Special Needs Program. The role of the program is to address the potential conflict between duty assignment locations and the availability of resources to accommodate family members with unique medical, physical, psychological, and/or educational special needs.

To help us ensure that the verification process of available services for families with special needs is smooth and transparent, we are implementing a special needs category system. This system will take into account not just the presence of special needs, but also the severity of medical conditions and accessibility of support services specifically, driving distance, or driving time to obtain services. Details of this new policy are provided in Coast Guard ALCOAST 039/15.

Members should plan early and ensure that their special needs enrollment information has been updated for all family members with special needs in order to prepare for the new transfer season. They should also contact their local Family Resource Specialist or FRS to obtain the enrollment status, or disenroll from the program, if their family members no longer meet the enrollment criteria

For more information on the Special Needs Program, please watch the short video tutorial at http://www.uscg.mil/worklife/SNP-tutorial.wmv, review the program’s information on your Work-Life mobile app, or visit the website at http://www.uscg.mil/worklife/special_needs.asp.


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