Recently, the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) announced it was improving the process for requesting home and living supports under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
From June 9, these sorts of requests can now be made as part of your overall plan. The NDIA said it changed the process to make it more “timely and consistent”, while respecting everyone’s individual and often complex needs.
So, what does this mean for you? Let’s start at the beginning:
What are Home and Living Supports?
The NDIA says it may fund reasonable and necessary home and living supports such as:
- Capacity building to help people to improve their living skills, their money and household management, social and communication skills, and behaviour management;
- Capacity building support to help people develop skills to improve their independence;
- Home modifications to a person’s home or a private rental property, or case-by-case basis in social housing;
- Assistive technology to allow a person with a disability to remain independent;
- Support for day-to-day tasks or personal care, such as help with showering and dressing, or around the home such as laundry and cleaning.
The NDIS may also contribute to the cost of accommodation where a person’s disability means they need specialised accommodation.
What has changed?
Anyone who needs to request a new support, or change their home and living supports, can now do so as part of their regular NDIS plan reviews.
The new Supporting Evidence Form – Home and Living can be submitted in one of three ways:
- Within 100 days of a plan end date, so it can be considered during a scheduled plan review;
- As part of a change of situation or change of details, along with the relevant change form; or
- As a request for a decision review, with the relevant review request form.
The new Supporting Evidence Form – Home and Living replaces the old Home and Living Supports request form. If you have recently submitted a request using the previous form, don’t worry – it will still be processed the same way. Just use the new form next time.
The new form will also help participants choose the correct option for their needs. You will, as usual, need to include any other relevant information such as any assessments or recommendations from your treating professionals.
What does this mean for people with disability?
The NDIA said it had made the changes after speaking with people with a disability, their families and carers, and organisations and stakeholders in the disability sector.
The changes are designed to:
- Speed up the process, to make sure that the people who need supports are getting them as soon as possible
- Meet the NDIA Participant Service Guarantee time commitments
- Simplify the process, but also ensure it is consistent – so that everyone can expect the same level of service.
In essence, what it means for you is: You should still be able to access all the same supports you need, but hopefully the process will be easier and more straightforward.
What if I have a plan review coming up?
If you are unsure about how to approach this – especially if you having a review pending – then get in touch with our team of experts at LiveBig. We can assess your needs and help you to work out incorporating the appropriate Home and Living Supports in your plan review.