NDIS

The NDIS at Neurospace

How do we do things differently at Neurospace?

We will ask first for a copy of your plan, so we can send you a service agreement. This outlines the funding you have and the supports you would like to use it for. We need to know your broad NDIS goals as the therapy we provide needs to work towards these goals. Often they need a bit more fleshing out, to make them more specific to you.

ndis

The next step is for you to identify some treatment goals. Think about what you can’t do right now but would like to be able to achieve within the next 12 months. You can also identify a few specific activities you that would like to improve on. Examples are: being able to walk a longer distance, being able to get in and out of your wheelchair more easily, or being able to communicate with your carers. Take your time with this step, as the more ideas you have, the more information your therapist has to work with. It is also good at this stage to think about how you will know when you have achieved this goal, and write this down too.

The breakdown of your therapy hours

We usually like to spend 60-90 minutes for our initial assessment. This gives us enough time to get to know you, work out your goals, and make a treatment plan. We will also prepare a short report from this session which we can provide to you or your case manager outlining what we found on assessment and what our recommendations are.

Based on this assessment, your therapist will make a plan to best use your available funds. Your therapist will suggest

  • How long these sessions should be – 30 mins, 45 mins, 60 mins
  • How often – weekly, fortnightly, monthly, 3-monthly
  • Are they individual or are they in a small group
  • Where – either in the clinic, at your home, at a community facility such as a gym or pool

If you suggest treatment outside of our clinic, there may be additional travel costs involved. Please discuss this with us further to know how this will affect how many sessions you have.

Also, if you need extra reports, writing up of a home exercise program, development of a training package, sourcing of equipment quotes etc, these may also be charged for. Your therapist will discuss this with you before anything is prepared.

At the end of your plan, we may need another 60-90 minutes to reassess your progress and prepare a short report to take to the NDIA for your plan review. This states your goals, your progress towards achieving them, and the next steps we recommend. This step is really important, as the NDIA may not approve extra funding without this.

 

What supports does the NDIS fund?

There are three separate support budgets, and you cannot shift money between budgets.

Core support: Funding is flexible between these 4 categories

  • daily activities
  • social, community and civic participation
  • consumables
  • transport

Capital: Funds in this budget are not flexible and can only be used what they were allocated for, such as a wheelchair, personal care equipment.

  • Assistive Technology – we can recommend items under this category, but we are not a supplier (you will need to purchase from somewhere else)
  • Home modifications

Capacity Building (CB): nine support categories, each category aligned to your goals. You cannot shift funding across these categories, but can use the funding allocated within each category flexibly

  • CB Daily Activity – therapeutic supports are here: physio, speech pathology, OT
  • CB Choice and Control
  • CB Employment
  • CB Social Community and Civic Participation
  • CB Health and Well Being – Exercise Physiology supports are here
  • CB Home Living
  • CB Lifelong Learning
  • CB Relationships
  • Support Coordination.

Under therapeutic supports (physio, occupational therapy, speech pathology, therapy assistant) the NDIS cover:

  • Maintenance care: therapy to maintain a level of functioning, to achieve small incremental gains or to prevent functional decline.

What does this mean? We can help keep you doing what you are doing, but have limited scope to make large improvements in your walking, talking, and activities of daily living. To maximise the funding and hours provided to you, we will provide you with ideas on how to optimise your daily activities – providing exercise programs, training your family and carers in how to help, and recommending pieces of equipment to keep you independent.

The NDIS also provides therapeutic supports to:

  • improve functioning in an early intervention context

Early intervention can be either children, or adults who need time limited intervention to improve functioning following an acute event (eg. Brain injury or stroke). In some cases, the NDIS provides funding for more intensive therapy, but only after initial rehabilitation is completed within the public health care system.

If you have goals that are centred on rehabilitation rather than maintenance (you want to improve your level of functioning or need an intensive burst of therapy to meet a particular goal), the NDIS is not set up to cover these costs. Your therapist may recommend a program such as this, and in most instances, the NDIS will not cover the costs. If you would like to talk about options for covering a rehab program privately, we can discuss some options with you.

The NDIS does not cover therapeutic supports for:

  • diagnosis and assessment of health conditions
  • treatment and support for acute and emergency services
  • subacute care including palliative care, geriatric evaluation and management, psychogeriatric care
  • post-acute care: such as nursing care and medical supplies for clinical supports delivered to a participant in their home following an acute episode
  • preventive health designed to improve general health or prevent illness, injury and chronic disease
  • treatment for a medical or health condition

What is assistive technology?

Assistive technology is 'any device or system that allows individuals to perform tasks they would otherwise be unable to do or increases the ease and safety with which tasks can be performed' (World Health Organisation definition).

The NDIS funds reasonable and necessary supports to help you reach your goals and aspiration, and take part in activities that increase your social and economic participation. This covers items like walking sticks, splinting, wheelchairs, adaptive equipment for the kitchen, hearing aids and much more.

It doesn't include

  • items needed for treatment or rehabilitation,
  • mainstream technology that does not overcome a functional limitations but modification to this technology could be AT (eg: a car would not be funded, but required modifications could be funded under AT)
  • built environment used by the public eg ramps and pathways.
  • House modifications to public housing – this is covered by ACT Public Housing
  • Modifications to your work environment – this is covered by your employer

Choice and Control and Reasonable and Necessary

We find there is always confusion around “choice and control” and “reasonable and necessary”.

Choice and control – the participant has the choice and control over what supports they access and from which provider. There is also there is flexibility within your plan to ensure you can choose how to spend your funds to live the life you want.

Reasonable and necessary – the NDIA determine what is reasonable and necessary, across the lifespan for people with a disability. There is detailed information available about this on their website https://www.ndis.gov.au/about-us/governance/IAC/iac-reasonable-necessary-lifespan. The NDIA funds reasonable and necessary supports that help a participant reach their goals and to undertake activities to enable the participant’s social and economic participation.

What is considered “reasonable and necessary?”

  • support people with disability to pursue their goals and maximise their independence
  • support people with disability to live independently and to be included in the community as fully participating citizens and
  • develop and support the capacity of people with disability to undertake activities that enable them to participate in the mainstream community and in employment

As a provider, we can recommend supports and equipment to help you meet your goals, but always need to address the criteria to justify to the NDIS why they are needed. The NDIS is assessing our requests against the following:

  • the support will assist the participant to pursue the goals, objectives and aspirations included in the participant’s statement of goals and aspirations;
  • the support will assist the participant to undertake activities, so as to facilitate the participant’s social and economic participation;
  • the support represents value for money in that the costs of the support are reasonable, relative to both the benefits achieved and the cost of alternative support;
  • the support will be, or is likely to be, effective and beneficial for the participant, having regard to current good practice;
  • the funding or provision of the support takes account of what it is reasonable to expect families, carers, informal networks and the community to provide;
  • the support is most appropriately funded or provided through the National Disability Insurance Scheme, and is not more appropriately funded or provided through other general systems of service delivery or support services offered by a person, agency or body, or systems of service delivery or support services offered.