Department of Human Services

Families First Online Policy Manual

Work Requirements




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The Medical Evaluation Unit (MEU) will determine whether an “in home disabled relative” meets the disability/incapacity criteria that give the assistance unit caretaker an exemption from the Families First work requirement or a time limit extension.


Sending the Medical Packet to the MEU


Address and complete all technical eligibility issues in the local DHS office before sending the medical/mental packet to the MEU for a decision.  It is NOT necessary to document the Medical/Social information on the eligibility and case management system on this type of case.   When technical and financial eligibility is established and a decision is required, the DHS caseworker will take the following steps:


·        Mail the “Physician’s Statement of Critical Need in the Home” form to the treating physician.  Give the doctor/provider two weeks to complete and return the form.


Note:  If it is not returned within two weeks, request that the caretaker have the form completed by the disabled individual’s treating physician within two weeks.  It is ultimately the caretaker’s responsibility to provide the appropriate documentation to the DHS caseworker.


·        Complete the MEU Information Checklist and mark the appropriate category.


·        Mail the MEU Information Checklist and Physician’s Statement of Critical Need in the Home to:


Medical Evaluation Unit


400 Deaderick Street

Nashville, TN 37243


The MEU will evaluate the “Physician’s Statement of Critical Need in the Home” or information provided by the client and make a decision based on the “medical/mental” necessity for the provision of in-home care.  The MEU decision will be mailed to the DHS caseworker for appropriate action.


The caretaker will be exempted from the work requirement until the MEU review is completed and a decision is made.  If the MEU review determines that the in-home disabled relative requires in-home care, as determined by a physician or other health care professional, the caretaker will be exempted from the work requirement until the care is no longer necessary.


Note: Some of the in-home care may be provided by home health care providers or other individuals to give the caretaker assistance/rest, but these services do not negate the exemption.   Bulletin 30, FA-08-22



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