The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is rolling out across Australia. This is good news! But if you’ve started exploring your options you may have been confronted by acronyms, processes and jargon.
With the help from Break Thru we’ve answered some of the questions many people ask about this new program.
What steps must I take to apply for NDIS?
The first step is to check your eligibility. You can do this by looking at the NDIS Access Checklist online, or you can call the National Disability Insurance Agency on 1800 800 110 and request an Access Request form.
When submitting your application, you will be connected with a Local Area Coordinator (LAC) whose job it is to help you work out your needs. However, there are also local providers, like Break Thru, that can provide support with your application.
What mental illnesses qualify for the NDIS?
When the National Disability Insurance Agency looks at eligibility for a new participant, they are looking at whether a person’s ‘condition’ is likely to be permanent. They don’t necessarily look at individual disabilities or illnesses unless it is to provide evidence of permanence. This is usually demonstrated through an evidence of your disability form.
What is an NDIS Plan and how do I get one?
When applying for the NDIS the agency will appoint a ‘Planner’ who determines support needs, as well as assigning a package and a Support Coordinator.
It is important to have a good relationship with both. Your relationship with the Planner will translate your needs into a suitable package. Your relationship with your Support Coordinator is a partnership that can bring this plan to life.
Once you complete the application and planning process you will receive your NDIS Plan. This plan will detail your supports, usually listed as hours of support delivery, and the funding underpinning this.
How do I access services covered under the NDIS?
Often as part of the NDIS Plan you will be assigned a Support Coordinator. This person helps you find paid providers and source mainstream support services.
There are three levels of support coordination. The highest level – a Specialist Support Coordinator – is from an allied health background, who has undertaken training to support people with complex support needs.
The National Disability Insurance Agency are not supposed to suggest one provider over another, but participants can search for providers in the provider search function on the NDIS website.
A good Support Coordinator will support you in accessing a range of quality providers so you can make an informed choice.
This article was published in consultation with Break Throu People Solutions.