What is the NDIS and what does it mean for me?
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is designed to empower people with disability to work towards their goals, to identify the disability related support they need to meet their goals, and to choose where they would like to buy their supports.
The NDIS changes the way that disability services are delivered in Australia. It recognises that disability related support is an entitlement, and means you have a choice of service providers in an open market – it gives you more choice and control.
If you enter the NDIS, you will go through a planning process with a NDIS representative, to develop your individual NDIS plan and determine the funding you will receive.
What is a NDIS plan?
Your NDIS plan will be all about you. It will include details about your personal goals and needs, details about the supports you will be funded for, and how much funding you will receive for these supports.
When the NDIS comes to your area, you will have a planning meeting with a NDIS representative, so they can talk to you about what you need in your plan. It’s a good idea to begin to prepare for this discussion before the NDIS comes to your area. Yooralla’s free guide to prepare for the NDIS can help you to get ready.
Once your NDIS plan is approved, it runs for 12 months, unless there is a significant change in your life that requires a review of your supports earlier. About six weeks before the end of your plan, you will be contacted to schedule a review of your plan and your goals for the year ahead.
What will the NDIS fund?
The NDIS will fund ‘reasonable and necessary’ supports needed to meet your needs and achieve your goals. Depending on your goals, the funding in your plan may include the following:
- Core funding – funding that covers functional support needs for daily living and participation and to access community supports and activities.
- Capital funding – funding that covers the purchase of one-off items such as equipment, technology or modifications. It also includes funding for Specialist Disability Accommodation.
- Capacity funding – funding that supports skill building, training, learning, capacity building, accessing employment, improving health and wellbeing and support coordination.
What does ‘reasonable and necessary’ mean?
The NDIS will fund ‘reasonable and necessary’ supports needed to meet your needs and achieve your goals. Reasonable and necessary supports must:
- be identified in your NDIS plan as helping you to achieve your goals
- be related to your disability
- help you take part in the community or to find paid work or volunteering work
- not include day-to-day living costs not related to your disability
- represent value for money
- be beneficial to you and be proven to work (tried and tested), and
- take into account informal family, carer and community support that is available to you.
What will the NDIS not fund?
The NDIS will only fund reasonable and necessary supports needed to meet your needs and achieve your goals.
The NDIS will not replace funding from mainstream services such as education, health, medication or other community services. For example, if you have a disability such as cerebral palsy and need a wheelchair to get around, this will be funded by the NDIS. However, if you also have asthma and use a ventolin puffer or nebulizer, this will be paid for by health services not the NDIS.
The NDIS does not fund everyday expenses such as rent, utilities, food or public transport (e.g. Myki).
What are the steps in getting my NDIS plan?
The supports you will get under NDIS will be determined through the planning process, and outlined in your NDIS plan. There are four main steps involved in getting your NDIS plan:
- NDIS contact and eligibility
- Preparing for your NDIS planning meeting
- Your NDIS planning meeting
- Your NDIS plan arrives – getting it started
Yooralla has created free guides to the NDIS that are designed to support you throughout this process.