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National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)

What is the NDIS?

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is the new way of providing support for people with disability, their families and carers in Australia.

The NDIS will provide about 460,000 Australians under the age of 65 with a permanent and significant disability with the reasonable and necessary supports they need to live an ordinary life.

Reasonable and necessary supports help people with disability achieve their goals, including independence, community involvement, employment and wellbeing.

Supports may include personal care and support, access to the community, therapy services and essential equipment.

The scheme can assist people to:

  • Identify their strengths and needs, plus any goals or aspirations they would like to start working towards.
  • Explore pathways and strategies to reach the goals outlined in their plan.
  • Choose the supports and services that best suit their needs.
  • Develop stronger links with their local community.
  • Build on natural supports such as friendships, neighbours and local community groups.

Am I eligible for the NDIS?

If you are an Australian Citizen living in an NDIS roll out area, are under the age of 65 and are living with younger onset dementia you may be eligible for the NDIS.

Are you under 65?
You need to be under 65 years of age when you apply to join the scheme.

Are you an Australian Citizen living in a roll out area?
You must live in Australia and
Be an Australian citizen OR
Hold a Permanent Visa OR
Hold a Protected Special Category Visa, that is you

  • Were in Australia on a Special Category Visa on 26 February 2001 or
  • Had been in Australia for at least 12 months in the 2 years immediately before 26 February 2001 and you returned to Australia after that day.

Further information on where the NDIS has rolled out in Western Australia now and where it will be available in the future is available on ndis.gov.au.

Do you meet the disability requirements?
You may meet the disability requirements if:

  • You have an impairment or condition that is likely to be permanent (i.e. it is likely to be lifelong) and
  • Your impairment substantially reduces your ability to participate effectively in activities, or perform tasks or actions unless you have:
    • Assistance from other people or
    • You have assistive technology or equipment (other than common items such as glasses) or
    • You can’t participate effectively even with assistance or aides and equipment and
    • Your impairment affects your capacity for social and economic participation and
    • You are likely to require support under the NDIS for your lifetime.

An impairment that varies in intensity e.g. because the impairment is of a chronic episodic nature may still be permanent, and you may require support under the NDIS for your lifetime, despite the variation. For more information about NDIS eligibility, please visit ndis.gov.au

What happens if I’m not found eligible for the NDIS?

Other government and community services like My Aged Care, Alzheimer’s WA and Carers Australia WA may be able to assist. You can test your eligibility for the scheme as many times as you like.

Where is the NDIS available in Western Australia?

Further information on where the NDIS has rolled out in Western Australia now and where it will be available in the future is available on ndis.gov.au.

How can the NDIS support a person living with Younger Onset Dementia?

The NDIS can help a person living with younger onset dementia to:

  • Achieve goals and aspirations
  • Engage in their local community
  • Build and maintain relationships
  • Maintain everyday activities like personal care, cooking and cleaning
  • Engage in new activities like golf, men’s shed or craft groups
  • Plan for the future

It can also provide ongoing funded support to access services including:

  • Social support – Individual or group support to engage in social or recreational activities.
  • Support with daily tasks – 1:1 support to assist a person to engage in a range of daily tasks like showering, cooking and cleaning.
  • Therapy and specialist support – examples could include occupational therapy, physiotherapy, speech therapy, etc.
  • Assistive equipment – assistive technology and daily living aids, examples could include: bed rails, shower chair, GPS devices, etc.

How do I apply for the NDIS?

  • Contact NDIS on 1800 800 110
  • You can apply for access to NDIS six months before it rolls out in your local area.
  • As part of your application process you will be asked to complete an ‘Access Request Form’.

To speed up the process make sure you have the following information ready to go:

  • Proof of diagnosis, e.g. letter / report from a neurologist
  • Proof of age, e.g. driver’s license
  • Proof of citizenship, e.g. birth certificate
  • Proof of address, e.g. electricity bill

You can also allow the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) to access to your Department of Human Services record (Centrelink).

Preparing for your first NDIS Plan

If you are deemed eligible for the NDIS, you will attend a meeting with an NDIS representative or ‘Planner’ to discuss your individual situation and the support(s) you may require. This meeting is referred to as a ‘planning conversation’. Before your first planning conversation it can be helpful to:

Think about your life now

  • How do things currently work?
  • What sort or supports or services do you currently have?

Think about your life in the future

  • What are your goals and aspirations?
  • What sort of supports and services might you require in the future?

To help develop this vision or picture of your life as it is now and into the future, you might like think about your:

  • Home life
  • Work – volunteer or paid employment
  • Transport
  • Health
  • Social relationships / supports
  • Learning
  • Hobbies

The NDIS website has a range of resources to help you prepare for you first plan.

Developing an NDIS Plan

How does the planning process work?

  • You will attend a meeting or ‘planning conversation’ with an NDIS representative or ‘Planner’.
  • You can invite other people to be present with you at this meeting, such as family, friends or a health professional.
  • Your NDIS planner will talk to you about things like how you manage every day activities, what supports you currently receive and your goals for the next 12 months.
  • They will help you to explore options that best meet your individual needs. For example:
    • Home – someone to support you at home or moving to a new home.
    • Work – organisations that may support you to work / volunteer
    • Transport – someone to support you in using public transport
    • Relationships – maintaining and increasing social supports
    • Learning – learning more about supports and services
    • Hobbies – how often, when, who will support you?

 Your plan may also include information about:

  • Informal Supports – the care and help you get from your family and friends.
  • Community Supports – the activities and services you can get from people or groups in your local community.
  • Mainstream Supports – the support and services you get from your doctor or school.
  • Reasonable and Necessary funded supports – the supports and services the NDIS can fund.

Your plan will be in place for 12 months. This will give you time to think about how those supports are working for you and what else you might need to help you achieve your goals before you do your next plan.

Starting your NDIS plan

How do I find a support or service?

  • Under NDIS you can choose your own support providers and how this support is delivered.
  • If deemed reasonable and necessary some participants may receive funds for ‘Coordination of Supports’ through their NDIS plan.
  • ‘Support Coordinators’ work creatively and resourcefully with participants in how they utilise their support budgets to achieve their goals.

The NDIS website has more information about how to find and engage with service providers.

Self-Management through the NDIS
  • You can discuss self-management options with your NDIS planner during your planning conversation.
  • Self-management means you are responsible for requesting and paying the invoices related to the supports you have received through your NDIS plan.
  • Self-managing any part of your NDIS funding or budget gives you choice and control over the people that you pay to support you.
  • It also gives you the opportunity to purchase supports from suppliers that have not registered with the NDIA. This can include any type of support provided if these supports have been incorporated in your NDIS Plan.
NDIS Plan Review

What has worked and what comes next?

  • Generally, plans are reviewed every 12 months to ensure that your plan goals and strategies are meeting your needs.
  • If your circumstances or needs change you can talk to NDIS about potentially changing your plan.
Where can I find more information about the NDIS?

To find out more about the NDIS visit ndis.gov.au or call 1800 800 110

You can also view our NDIS video

Where can I find more information about Alzheimer’s WA Services?

To find out more about Alzheimer’s WA NDIS Services please call us on 1300 66 77 88 or NDIS@alzheimerswa.org.au


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