For participants - coronavirus (COVID-19)

What is the NDIS doing to help participants?

We have a number of coronavirus (COVID-19) measures available to support participants to safely access their NDIS funded supports and services, such as:

  • Using existing plan funding to purchase personal protective equipment (PPE) where there is a reasonable and necessary need. 
  • Increased flexibility within your budgets to purchase disability supports when impacted by COVID-19.

Participants who have concerns about accessing their NDIS supports, should contact their service provider in the first instance. 

You can also phone the NDIS Contact Centre on 1800 800 110 if your situation has changed due to COVID-19.

This includes if you are running out of funds in your plan.

All calls relating to COVID-19 are prioritised.

We will continue to review COVID-19 arrangements and will make updates to the measures below as needed.

General measures

We continue to work closely with all areas of Government and NDIS providers to support participants.

We’ve also made the following measures available to strengthen our response to COVID-19: 

Accessing the NDIS

Accessing supports

  • Participants who have concerns about accessing their NDIS supports, should contact their service provider in the first instance. The provider may suggest different ways to deliver the support during this time.
  • Participants can also contact their ‘my NDIS contact’ listed on their NDIS plan, or call the NDIS call centre.
  • If participants are concerned that their NDIS supports and services are being withdrawn, without prior discussion or arrangements being made available by the provider, they should contact the NDIS Commission .
  • The NDIS Commission has broad powers to take compliance and enforcement action when NDIS providers and their workers are found to not have met their obligations and duty of care requirements.

Assistive technology (AT)

  • Participants can use their existing Core Supports budget to buy low cost AT, such as fitness equipment or a personal portable air purifier to help them continue accessing supports.

COVID-19 testing

  • Eligible NDIS participants can purchase rapid antigen tests (RAT) with NDIS plan funding from their core budget. Your Core Supports budget is flexible and can be used to cover the cost of RATs.

  • If you have a visual impairment, and you’re an NDIS participant, you can use your plan funding to get help reading RAT instructions and results.

There is a visual interpreter service that offers free 30 minute interpreter sessions, to provide COVID-19 assistance, including help with RATs .

You can also ask your support worker, family, or carer to help you take and read the results of a RAT test.

For added protection, yourself, your support worker, family, or carer can wear a mask, personal protective equipment and follow COVID-19 safe behaviours when assisting with taking RATs.

COVID-19 vaccination

Meal preparation and delivery

  • Participants who usually have a support worker help them prepare meals at home or help with grocery shopping, can use these funds to pay for meal preparation and delivery support when impacted by COVID-19.
  • We made this support more flexible to help participants impacted by COVID-19. This flexibility will now continue so you can change your arrangements for a short time.
  • We recently updated our guidelines on meal preparation .

One-off deep clean

If a participant has a support worker attending their home who later tests positive to COVID-19, then the participant will be able to access a one-off deep clean.

Plans and plan reassessments

  • If you prefer, face-to-face planning has shifted to telephone meetings.
  • Increased flexibility within your budgets to purchase disability supports.

Personal protective equipment (PPE)

  • Participants with a reasonable and necessary need for PPE when their disability worker is supporting them can use their NDIS funds to purchase PPE.
  • The cost of PPE should not be more than $50 a week and can be claimed from your core supports budget.
  • Visit the health and safety page for more information.

Self-managed participants

  • All NDIS COVID-19 supports, including temporary changes and resources are available to all participants. This includes those who are self-managing their plans. Self-managing participants can engage with new registered or unregistered providers, change services, or find new workers themselves at any time. 
  • Self-managing participants can also change the way they manage their plan if you think that this is right for you.
  • Self-managing participants can make a COVID-19 plan that meets your needs.

Resources are available on the Collaborating 4 Inclusion website such as:

  • Person-Centred Emergency Preparedness Planning for COVID-19 - For People with Disability toolkit Easy Read
  • Person-Centred Emergency Preparedness Planning for COVID-19 - For People with Disability
  • My COVID-19 Plan template.  

Supported independent living

  • To help participants in supported independent living (SIL) during COVID-19, we have introduced support items for cleaning services and higher intensity support.

COVID-19 planning resource for people with disability

Collaborating 4 Inclusion has worked with the Australian Government Department of Health and aged care to develop a guide which helps people with disability to get the facts about COVID-19 and make a plan for how to manage the impact.

Visit the Collaborating 4 Inclusion website for further information. 

    This page current as of
    8 November 2023
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