Navigating the NDIS Price Guide – Personal Care
The NDIA Price Guide refers to a list that sets out the cost of each support item, created to implement the spending of your funds. It is behind all plans and the amounts are used by the NDIS to calculate your plan.
Personal care is a large aspect of most people’s plans. It is not always charged at the same rate and so can be complicated when you are calculating the amount that you need in your plan. So it’s quite important to do the best calculation you can, or get a quote from your care agency, as part of your pre-planning preparation.
As an example, Jane (name changed) receives five hours of care each day, two hours in the morning and three in the evening. At her planning meeting Jane was quite vague about the hours that she needed which made it really difficult for her planner to calculate her core budget. The planner assumed that the evening hours would occur before 8pm, and also forgot to include Saturday, Sunday and Public Holiday rates. This assumption and the miss of rate changes resulted in Jane being funded for five hours a day of personal care at $44.72 totalling $81,445 over a 12 month period. This may seem like a large number, however, when you calculate this to include the rate changes on Saturdays, Sunday, Public Holidays and two hours a day after 8pm the total looks more like $101,247.84 - approximately $20,000 difference!
With the large gap, Jane quickly realised that she would need to get her plan reviewed as soon as possible, learning that it’s very important to get the right documentation in order to receive sufficient the funds you need. If you need to get a review of you plan it is essential to do it as early as possible and to know what you are asking for – it may not be as quick or easy as you think. Jane was lucky enough to receive funding for Support Coordination in her plan and used this service to get some calculations done. So at the second meeting, was able to identify this short fall of $20,000 for personal care, and quickly get the plan review process underway. In the meantime, Jane started using her original plan as needed, and by the time additional funds were needed to cover personal care, her plan review had progressed and the additional funds were implemented. Jane learnt that seeking as much knowledge as possible, having a copy of the price guide and being clear and upfront about your needs in your planning meeting will give you a higher chance of getting a thorough and successful first plan.
If you need help with assessing and calculating how many hours you may need to receive supports such as personal care, contact your personal care agency to get a quote – all agencies should be very happy to provide this.