The NDIS and the NDIA – A Brief History…

The NDIS is a much needed reform of disability support in Australia.  It came to fruition after years of discussions regarding problems with the existing disability support arrangements and the major need for reform

A senate inquiry on February 8th 2007 first recommended the development of a National Disability Strategy and further recommended that the likely costs and benefits of individualised funding needed to be looked at. It went on to recommend that since most families and individuals could not prepare for the risk and financial impact of disability in their family, a scheme similar to Medicare based on insurance, should be implemented as the government ‘block funding’ model being used at the time was both inadequate and totally unfair

Now, through the NDIS, funding for disability support goes directly to the person with a disability, allowing THEM to decide which organisation/person can provide them with support.  And if they are not happy with the provider THEY have the choice to find a more suitable provider.  The archaic block funding of the past has been replaced with individualised funding packages, giving the person with disability much more choice and control over their lives.  Finally, they have a choice and a voice

The NDIS is the only national scheme of its kind in the world. It is important to note that the NDIS is not a welfare system. The NDIS is designed to help people receive the support they need in order to improve their skills and independence over time

The NDIS is entirely publicly funded, meaning recipients do not purchase or contribute to an insurance policy, nor is their NDIS funding means-tested.  It aims to insure that any citizen will have costs covered in the event they are born with or acquire a disability.  Individual NDIS funding is independent of the Disability Support Pension and health care

The introduction and the impact of the NDIS has been life changing for hundreds of thousands of Australians, opening up a whole new world of possibilities for people with a disability, giving them both choice and control of their lives.  Close to one in three people entering the scheme are receiving disability supports for the very first time

 Through the National Disability Insurance Agency  and the National Disability Insurance Scheme, it is hoped that the disability service provider sector will better reflect the interests of people with disabilities, allowing them and their family to be in control, make choices and plan their lives moving forward with dignity, confidence and respect.

Karen Bohringer
National Disability Consulting CEO

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Karen Bohringer