“At the heart of the NDIS is the issue of equity, its vision to maximise people’s independence and social and economic participation is both simple and powerful."
What is the NDIS?
The NDIS is the National Disability Insurance Scheme and it is a new way of funding and delivering services.
The NDIS uses an insurance approach similar to Medicare, which means that the costs of the scheme will be shared among the wider community.
Why did we need a new system?
The old system was inefficient, fragmented, unfair, underfunded and many people with a disability didn’t get the support they needed.
How is the NDIS different?
The NDIS will have a range of benefits for people who are eligible including a fairer funding system which will be consistent across the country. People will be able to choose how, when and where they receive support and have increased opportunities to participate in their community.
When will the NDIS be available?
To make sure the NDIS is implemented successfully, it is being rolled out over several years.
Until the Scheme has been rolled out in your area, existing Commonwealth, state and territory government funded disability services will continue. The full scheme will be progressively rolled out across Australia by 2019.
Who will be eligible for the NDIS?
Eligibility for support under the NDIS will depend on whether you meet the requirements for disability or early intervention support, your location and age.
Use the NDIS Access Checklist to see if you meet the requirements to receive NDIS funding.
Who manages the NDIS?
The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) manages the NDIS.
What is the assessment process?
Firstly, the NDIA will need to determine if you are eligible. They will also ask you about your goals and aspirations and the kinds of support you think you may need.
They will ask for:
- confirmation of your identity, where you live, any disability support services you currently receive, information or reports about your support needs relating to your disability
- You can choose to give all of this information directly to the NDIA or you can give them permission to collect it from other people or agencies if they already have the information.
How does the planning process work?
An NDIA planner will meet with you to develop your Plan. They will talk with you about the things you want to do to achieve your goals, the supports you already have and what else you may need. Once your Plan is approved you will be able to choose a Registered Provider, such as Disability Services Australia, to provide your supports.
Are you able to choose the type of support you receive?
Yes. That is what the NDIS is all about. It was established to give people more choice and control over how, when and where their supports are provided. The supports in your plan are tailored to your individual needs.
These could include therapies, equipment, home modifications, mobility equipment, taking part in community activities, assistance with employment and a range of other activities. This is about you living a full life, not just getting by.
Who manages your funding?
You can choose to manage your funding yourself (self-management) or you can opt to have someone else manage it for you:
- a plan ‘nominee’
- a registered plan management provider
- the NDIA
What will the NDIS cover?
The NDIS will fund reasonable and necessary supports that help someone with a disability to:
- pursue their goals, objectives and aspirations
- increase their independence, and
- develop their capacity to actively take part in the community.
This support may include education, employment, social participation, independence, living arrangements and health and well-being.
How do you get started then?
Firstly, check your eligibility using the NDIS Access Checklist. It will only take 5-10 minutes and you’ll know if you’re likely to be eligible straight away. It’s anonymous, you just have to give your first name.
Looks like you qualify. What next?
Once the NDIS Agency confirms that you are eligible, you’ll sit down with a planner who will help you to develop a plan specifically suited to your needs. The planner will review the information in your access request form and take into account any existing assessments.
How specific can you be in your planning meeting?
You should be very specific in your planning meeting. Think about what you want before you start the process, i.e. plan for your plan. Come with information about your goals and aspirations. Think about your current supports and what works well. Talk these ideas through with your family, friends and anyone else who is important to you.
Your planner will talk with you about everything from your strengths, abilities and opportunities for development to your support needs for daily living and participation in the community. The key here is to make sure you get the ‘reasonable and necessary’ supports you need to make progress towards your goals.
What should you do next?
If you need more information, contact us to find out more about the NDIS and how DSA can support you.
P: 1300 372 121