Frequently Asked Questions – NDIS (DisabilityCare Australia)
1. What is the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS, DisabilityCare Australia)?
2. Am I eligible for DisabilityCare Australia?
3. How will DisabilityCare Australia work?
4. When can I access DisabilityCare Australia?
5. What will happen to my current funding?
6. What is happening in the DisabilityCare Australia launch?
7. What are AbilityLinks Co-ordinators?
8. What is Sunnyfield doing to prepare for the NDIS?
9. Where can I find out more information about the NDIS?
• The NDIS is an insurance scheme that provides funding to support all Australians with a permanent and lifelong significant disability e.g. impaired communication, mobility or ability to partake in activities of daily living such as self-care and community access.
• The scheme will support around 410,000 people across Australia, including 150,000 in NSW (an increase of 100,000 people compared to 2011-2012 in NSW).
• Disability services funding in NSW will triple from $2.1B (2011-12) to $6.4B by 2018. As of mid-2013, only WA has yet to come to an agreement with the Federal Government for ongoing funding of the NDIS.
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Anybody currently receiving disability services will be eligible for the NDIS. People not currently receiving services will be eligible if you meet the following requirements:
- You have a permanent disability
- You cannot join in activities or do things without assistive technology, equipment (other than commonly used items such as glasses) or home modifications; or
- You usually require assistance (including physical assistance, supervision or prompting) from other people to join in or do relevant activities.
Age: Under 65 at time of entry into the NDIS
Residency: Australian citizen, holder of a permanent visa or a special category visa holder.
Early intervention requirements:
If you have a permanent impairment AND there is evidence that getting supports now (early interventions) will help you by either: reducing how much help you need to do things now and in the future or helping your family and carer to keep helping you.
• DisabilityCare Australia planners will work with every participant and/or their designated nominee to discuss individual goals and support needs, and develop a personalised plan which will outline the amount of funding for each relevant category of support (e.g. therapy, in-home support etc. These categories will be released in July by DisabilityCare Australia).
• Plans will outline the duration of the plan and its funding, so a review can occur as needs change. Reviews are expected to be annually.
• Participants (or their nominee) can choose to manage funding in one of three ways
o Plan Management Provider – A third party (who could also be a service provider), will manage the legal, financial and administrative requirements of your support
o Self-management (by participant or nominee)– You will need to manage all the legal, financial and administrative requirements of your supports
o Agency management – The agency will arrange payments of your service provider of choice on your behalf. Some high-cost items (e.g. home modifications) will require agency management (e.g. sight quotes prior to payment approval).
• If you live in the Hunter launch area (Newcastle, Maitland and Lake Macquarie local government area):
o From 1 July 2013, people in the launch areas can apply to become part of the NDIS Launch. Use the ‘My Access Checker’ tool to confirm your eligibility for the NDIS. Priority is given to those who are not currently accessing funding.
o Existing service users will be contacted by DisabilityCare Australia to enter the scheme over time (Lake Macquarie – from July 2014, Maitland – from July 2015)
• If you live outside a launch area, full roll-out of the scheme is due to commence in 2016 and be complete by 2018.
• Your current arrangements will stay in place until the NDIS is rolled out in your area and you have met with DisabilityCare Australia to develop an individual plan.
• The NDIS will acknowledge that you are currently receiving funding and acknowledge this on your plan as ‘in-kind support’. If the planning process identifies that additional funding is required, then NDIS funding will be given to ‘top-up’ your existing funding.
• Across Australia, there are 6 launch locations – Newcastle, Lake Macquarie and Maitland local government areas in NSW, Barwon region in Victoria, entire of TAS, SA and ACT, and the Barkly Region in NT. A launch area for Qld is yet to be announced.
• The NSW launch will commence from 1 July 2013 in the Newcastle, Lake Macquarie and Maitland Local Government Areas. 10,000 people are expected to participate in the scheme, gradually rolled out over 3 years. The Agency office will be located in Charlestown.
• The full roll-out of the scheme will commence in 2016, and by July 2018 all people in NSW will be able to access DisabilityCare Australia.
• AbilityLinks Co-ordinators are local area co-ordinators, providing a first point of contact for the NSW disability services system.
• They will work with people with a disability, their families and carers to plan for their future, build new networks and access support and services in their community. They will work alongside communities and mainstream services, supporting them to become more welcoming and inclusive.
• AbilityLinks Co-ordinators are not related to DisabilityCare Australia and their focus is on mainstream, not specialist disability services.
• The NSW government has provided funding for 248 Ability Links Coordinators across the state.
• The NSW government has appointed St Vincent de Paul as the provider of AbilityLinks Co-ordinators in the Hunter area, and is undergoing a tender process for the remaining areas in NSW.
• See more at: http://www.adhc.nsw.gov.au/individuals/inclusion_and_participation/ability_links_nsw/ability_links_nsw_coordinators#sthash.tGGbS6Q2.dpuf
• We recently finalised a revised 2014-17 Strategic Plan in response to the changing environment. It includes a greater focus on achieving person-centred outcomes, increasing the flexibility and range of our services and improving customer service and marketing, amongst other initiatives.
• We are working on establishing a presence in the Hunter to learn from the launch of the NDIS and how it is likely to impact our clients and families.
• We have recently conducted family forums and we are releasing updates on the NDIS with each edition of Sunnyfield Matters, which is released 5 times per year. To subscribe enter your details on our 'Contact Us' form here.
• DisabilityCare Australia
Call on 1800 800 110 - Monday to Friday 9.00am to 5.00pm EST
National Relay Service Call 1800 555 677 and ask for 1800 800 110
Translating and Interpreting Services Call 131 450 and ask for 1800 800 110
• National Disability Services