NDIS incorporating valuable lessons ahead of full rollout

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The “Report on the sustainability of the scheme” for the December quarter 2014 was released today. It shows the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is on time, on budget, has very high participant satisfaction and is incorporating valuable lessons learnt ahead of full-scheme rollout.

The NDIS is currently operating in seven trial sites and transition to full national coverage will start from July next year.

National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) chairman Bruce Bonyhady said the first 18 months of the scheme had been life changing for more than 11,000 people with disability.

“The individualised approach of the NDIS has given people with disability and their families the choice and control to pursue an ordinary life something many of us can take for granted,” Mr Bonyhady said.

“We are seeing people living more independent lives, engaging with their community, enrolling in education, entering the workforce for the first time or returning to work, and receiving the services and equipment they need,” he said.

“The focus is on what a person can do not what they cannot and investing in them leads to not only better social outcomes for individuals, but more economic participation and a stronger Australian economy.”

Key findings of the report include:

  • Participant satisfaction remains very high with 95 per cent rating their NDIS experience as “good” or “very good”.
  • 13,646 people have been found eligible for the NDIS, with 11,029 having approved individualised support plans in place by the end of December.
  • More than $565.3 million has been committed to these participants.
  • The average package cost is $35,300, which is below the funding expectation of $36,750.*

Mr Bonyhady said the agency was keen to listen, learn, build and deliver.

“Of course, a reform of this size has its challenges. It’s the biggest social reform in 30 years and will cover the whole of Australia,” Mr Bonyhady said.

“As full-scheme rollout approaches, the most significant challenges are ahead of us. The agency is refining and improving the design and operations of the scheme, building the capacities of the agency itself and working to improve its communications and stakeholder relationships,” he said.

“We have learnt a lot in the last 18 months and will continue to make improvements and take on board the feedback of the people at the heart of the scheme Australians with disability, their families and carers.”

To see the latest quarterly data, see www.ndis.gov.au/quarterlyreports.

NDIA media contact: 0477 703 960 or media@ndis.gov.au

* Average cost excludes Stockton and Colanda, large group homes in the Hunter and Colac that are temporarily distorting the numbers. The expected cost is for 2014-15 and is based on the average expected cost of $35,000 in 2013-14 plus an adjustment for inflation.