Last week on Thursday, 7 December, a major milestone for participants was reached with the release of the NDIS Review’s final report.
In October 2022, the planned 10-year review of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) was brought forward with the purpose of putting people with disability back at the centre of the NDIS as it was originally intended and restore trust, confidence and pride in the Scheme.
The Review looked at the Scheme’s design, operations and sustainability as well as how to build a more responsive, supportive and sustainable market and workforce.
The 329-page report details 26 recommendations and 139 actions to be implemented within five years, with the government expected to respond to the report in 2024.
The Review published its ‘NDIS Review at a Glance’. The report covers four key areas of focus:
An initial look at the NDIS Review’s final report mirrors Ability Options’ goals as an organisation, says CEO Julia Squire.
“At Ability Options, we fully support co-designed, safe, and beneficial reform to the NDIS to continue our mission to support people who need assistance achieving their goals and be fully included in society,” she said.
“This Review addresses a number of the concerns we have had about the Scheme including how difficult it is to work through, it’s lack of focus on quality and outcomes, the proliferation of unregistered Providers and independent pricing. There is much to read through and understand over the next few months.”
Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme, the Hon. Bill Shorten MP addressed the National Press Club (NPC) today to reinforce that the NDIS “is here to stay” as it enters this next phase.
Referring to his address to the NPC on 18 April this year, Minister Shorten said many were anxious about the future of the NDIS.
“No one wants to go back to the days of the misery Olympics when Australians with disability were at the mercy of a broken system,” Minister Shorten said.
“Let me be clear. Australia is never going back to the bad old days.”
Ability Options CEO Julia Squire resonated with Minister Shorten’s remarks about the often “traumatising and dehumanising” bureaucracy of the Scheme as it stands today.
“It’s important the Review has focussed on ways to make the NDIS less bureaucratic for people living with disability to access,” she said.
“I watched Minister Shorten’s address to the National Press Club and resonated with his remark that people on the Scheme are fed up and tired of having to prove their disability over and over again. The Review of the Scheme will help make the NDIS more accessible for the people living with disability that need that level of support. It is also clear that proper reform and implementation will need genuine co-design and will take time.”
The recommendations are to be considered by the Government and the Minister thinks that reform will take 5 years so there is time for us to engage in the process of finalising it and most importantly time for people living with disability to co design the solutions.”
Ability Options will be going through the NDIS Review’s final report and provide further updates.