The process for joining the NDIS will differ depending on the level and type of compensation that you receive.
If you are 64 years old and are worried about missing the age cut-off for the NDIS, the best thing to do is to contact NDIA, and ask for an Access Request Form (ARF). This may be necessary to ensure that you gain access to the NDIS funding and benefits before you turn 65 and might be considered no longer eligible.
If you are receiving DHHS funding and are over 65, you are ineligible for the NDIS. However the DHS funding agreement should continue to support you.
How long the NDIA will take to get back to you and set up a meeting will vary for each person. The NDIA aren’t even sure at the moment. Right now the system is overworked and has just gotten up and running. They say it should be a few weeks, but could be longer.
If you are unsure about what method you should follow to get in contact with the NDIA and start the process, you can always call them and ask them, they are there to help!
Once you have been accepted into the NDIS, the planning and assessment process will be started. This will include an NDIS planning meeting with you and family members and an NDIS planner. The purpose of this meeting is to develop a plan which will set out the details of the services you need and who will be providing those services.
A key focus of your first plan as you enter the NDIS is to address any unmet needs. However, if you are satisfied with your existing arrangements, it allows for those arrangements to continue under the NDIS for in-scope services.
Your plan should be reviewed every 12 months so that if the services you need or your goals change you will be able to revise your plan to better reflect your new goals.
One thing to keep in mind is that this isn’t the only plan that you will complete, there will always be an opportunity to adjust and change your goals and aspirations. Once the plan is completed and you are happy with it, a support co-ordinator should then make contact with you to implement your plan. This will include selecting providers and setting up service agreements. The support co-coordinator should also help you understand how to use Myplace online.
According to the NDIA, you should start receiving your funding almost immediately (within a few days). Your individual DHS contract should only start to taper off after the funding for the NDIS has begun. The NDIS has a focus on self-direction, this means that you will have control over the supports you receive and how they are provided. You will also have control over your funding as well.
Once your NDIS plan is being put into action, you will be able to choose the providers that you want to deliver the services you require. Normally, you will need to make a written agreement with the provider to do this.
Planning meetings can be done either on the phone or face to face. If the NDIS planner that you are in contact with wants to do the meeting over the phone, and you aren’t comfortable with that, you have the right to say no to a phone meeting and ask for a face to face plan. The NDIS is a system made to meet the needs of the population and they should be accommodating of you.
After the plan is finished, you are entitled to see a copy of the plan or get voice readout if you want to review it and see where your funding is going. If you aren’t happy with it, you can get it adjusted.
If, at any stage, you aren’t happy with your plan, whether it isn’t properly addressing your goals or not focusing on the right areas, you can fill out a request for a formal plan review. This means that the NDIS will look into your plan and review it to ensure that your needs will be met.
Once your plan has been completed, funding for the services and supports that you require to fulfil your goals should be available almost immediately. However, if you are not happy with your plan or the level of funding you will receive, then you can contest it. The NDIS focuses on consumer choice and you are entitled to challenge them if you feel that you need a higher level of funding to achieve your goals.