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An Overview of the NDIS’ 2023 Review 

Despite the challenges and changes ahead, there's optimism in the air. Careview, a leader in the sector, of NDIS software, sees these recommendations as steps towards keeping participants at the heart of the NDIS. They remain committed to providing comprehensive NDIS software and support to plan managers and support coordinators.

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) has been a beacon of hope for people with disabilities and their families in Australia. The NDIS’s mission is to provide support and assistance to those in need and has changed countless lives for the better. 

This blog provides a comprehensive overview of the 2023 NDIS Review that was conducted to ensure its sustainability, transparency, and effectiveness.

The NDIS 2023 Review focuses on three overarching objectives:

Putting People with Disabilities First: The primary goal is to put individuals with disabilities back at the centre of the NDIS. It’s about reaffirming the commitment to improving the lives of those it was designed to help.

Restoring Trust and Confidence: The NDIS has faced its share of challenges and criticism. Restoring trust, confidence, and pride in the system is a critical part of the review’s mission.

Ensuring Sustainability: The NDIS should not only serve the current generation but also be sustainable for future generations. This means carefully managing its budget and resources.

Gradual Changes for a Better Future

One of the key takeaways from the review is that changes won’t happen overnight. The government’s full response to the review is expected next year, and reforms are anticipated to occur gradually over the next five years. This approach is designed to address the concerns of participants who fear abrupt changes that could disrupt their lives.

Engagement Process and Key Findings

The review process was extensive, with 3850 online submissions and input from participants, NDIA staff, service providers, technical partners, and disability representative organisations, including Autism Queensland.

Support for Greater Needs: The NDIS should focus on supporting people with significant and permanent disabilities who require substantial assistance.

Complexity and Navigation: The NDIS has become overly complex, making it challenging for participants and their families to navigate. Many have resorted to using Plan Managers.

Sustainability: The NDIS budget faces challenges, particularly due to the increase in children with ASD and developmental delays enrolling in the program.

Transparency and Fraud: Transparency is lacking in the system, leading to concerns about fraud.

Recommendations for Change

The review report contains 26 recommendations and approximately 140 suggested actions to transform the NDIS over the next five years. Some of the key recommendations include:

Access Based on Functional Impairment: The report suggests transitioning from the current practice of granting access solely based on medical diagnoses to a new approach centred on assessing “functional impairment,” which measures the extent to which a person’s disability impacts their daily life. As part of this shift, the report proposes streamlining and enhancing the NDIS application process. Furthermore, it advocates for establishing more precise definitions for essential eligibility criteria, including the concept of “reasonable and necessary” support.

Support for Children: 

The review recommends increasing assistance for children who have developmental delays or disabilities beyond the scope of the NDIS. With over 150,000 NDIS participants, roughly a quarter of the total, being under the age of nine, it’s evident that children’s participation in the NDIS has been growing rapidly. This highlights the urgent requirement for enhanced support tailored to the needs of children in this context.

Regulation of Providers: The report calls for comprehensive regulation of all NDIS support providers, a significant departure from the current landscape. In the last fiscal year, there were 16,000 registered NDIS providers and an additional 154,000 unregistered providers delivering services. The absence of regulations has led to some providers lacking essential skills. This transition to regulation will occur gradually over several years, allowing providers time to complete their registration.

Foundational Supports: Will be introduced to address gaps in the NDIS, enabling individuals who do not meet its criteria to access specific services. Examples of foundational support services encompass assistance with tasks like cleaning and cooking, personal care, early interventions for children and adolescents, and peer support. A new Foundational Support System, financially supported and crafted by both the Commonwealth and State governments, will be established to cater to individuals with milder needs, such as those with mild Autism and developmental delays. This approach signifies a departure from the sole reliance on the NDIS, offering additional avenues of support for people living with disabilities.

Navigators: 

The report proposes a “navigator” program, funding workers to aid participants in navigating changes and finding support beyond the NDIS. These navigators, categorised into five types, offer assistance to individuals with disabilities in both the NDIS and Foundational Support System. These categories include General, Specialist, Psychosocial Recovery, Housing and Living, Shared Support, and Lead Practitioner Navigators, addressing specific needs within the disability support system.

Restructuring the Funding Model: Changing the basis for setting a budget to a whole-of-person level, rather than for individual support items. 

Government Collaboration: Encouraging all levels of government to collaborate in providing disability support services in the community.

Housing and Planning Improvements: Recommending changes in housing funding and access processes. This includes covering costs to facilitate access to extra support for individuals with disabilities outside the NDIS. Collaborative funding for a “capacity-building program” to support caregivers of children with developmental concerns and disabilities. Enhancing financial backing for psychosocial support beyond the NDIS to assist individuals dealing with mental health challenges who encounter barriers when seeking assistance.

Looking Towards the Future

Despite the challenges and changes ahead, there’s optimism in the air. Careview, a leader in the sector, of NDIS software, sees these recommendations as steps towards keeping participants at the heart of the NDIS. They remain committed to providing comprehensive NDIS software and support to plan managers and support coordinators.

Careview’s NDIS software aims to streamline processes, reduce time spent on administrative tasks, and ultimately enable the best care for participants. As the NDIS continues to improve and evolve, Careview looks forward to leading the change in the sector and NDIS software.

Exciting advancements in Careview’s NDIS software are on the horizon, promising to revolutionise the way support is delivered. Stay tuned for these upcoming developments as we work together to create a brighter future for people with disabilities in Australia.

To learn more about the review, read here

Despite the challenges and changes ahead, there's optimism in the air. Careview, a leader in the sector, of NDIS software, sees these recommendations as steps towards keeping participants at the heart of the NDIS. They remain committed to providing comprehensive NDIS software and support to plan managers and support coordinators.