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Health, Safety & Work-Life Directorate

Office of Work-Life Programs -
Special Needs Programchild swinging from parents arms

Who is Eligible for this Program?
The special needs program is a mandatory enrollment program for all active duty and selected reserve members on orders for 181 days or more who have dependent family members diagnosed with medical, psychological, physical, or educational special needs.

Information and referral to special needs resources is available for retired Coast Guard members and current civilian employees of the Coast Guard however retirees and civilians are not eligible for enrollment in the program.

Purpose of Program
The objective of the program is to identify and support the special needs of a Coast Guard family and allow the active duty member to be mission ready. The Special Needs Program, working in concert with other military and civilian agencies, provides a comprehensive, coordinated, multidisciplinary approach to community support, housing, medical, educational, and personnel services for the Coast Guard families with special needs. By following specific procedures and guidelines, efforts will be made to ensure that sponsors with family members who have special needs are assigned to duty stations where resources are available to support their needs with access to, and availability of, medical, educational, and community services.

Enrollment in the Special Needs Program does not preclude members from sea duty, normal sea/shore rotations, unaccompanied assignments, standing watches, or performing normally assigned duties.

Categories of Special Needs and Criteria for Enrollment in the Special Needs Program
The following definitions apply to the Special Needs Program:

Medical Special Needs:

 Psychological Special Needs:

Physical Special Needs

Educational Special Needs:

Enrollment Process

For all enrollments and enrollment updates processed after 1 October 2011, DD Form 2792 (for medical, psychological, and physical conditions) and DD Form 2792-1 (for educational special needs) shall be completed by the family members’ medical provider or school personnel (respectively) and submitted by the active duty member to the servicing Health, Safety, and Work Life (HSWL) Family Resource Specialist (FRS). No additional medical documentation will be required.

The FRS will forward the DD Form 2792 and 2792-1 to the cognizant Coast Guard Senior Medical Executive (SME) for verification of eligibility for enrollment. As warranted, the FRS will verify educational eligibility for enrollment by reviewing child’s IEP or IFSP. The FRS will complete the enrollment process by entering appropriate information in the Direct Access.

Special Needs Resources Available through the Work-Life Programs

Program Confidentiality
Discussions between a person enrolled in the Special Needs Program and the regional Work-Life FRS are confidential, with the exception of notification to the member's command of his/her enrollment in the Special Needs Program.

The FRS will manage the active duty member’s special needs record and provide non-medical case management. The information contained in the special needs case file is not part of the member's service record. Access to the special needs record is strictly limited to the HSWL Regional Practice Manager, FRS, HSWL Service Center personnel conducting quality assurance inspections, and HQ's Special Needs Program Manager.

Related Program Information

Program References
The following references provide details of the Coast Guard Special Needs Program:

Related Websites
The following web sites provide information related to the Special Needs Program:

Point of Contact
Information about the Special Needs Program may be obtained by contacting the HSWL FRS. Please review the enclosed link for a list of Regional Work-Life Staff .

If you are unable to contact an FRS on your
Regional Work-Life Staff
 or need additional assistance beyond the information provided here, please contact the Headquarters Special Needs Program Manager, Dr. Marta Denchfield at (202) 475-5156 or by email at

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Last Modified 4/16/2014