10519 – Individual submission

I provide this submission for inclusion for the Review of the NDIS Act and the new NDIS Participant Service Guarantee.

I have attached a letter sent to the Minister for the NDIS in regards to some of the Agencies shortcomings – in relation to the timeframe for a determination for the Access request. (names and personal details blanked out).

I have also attached two (2) letters sent by the NDIS that had no relevance and incorrect and misleading information in regards to my wife’s Access request which ultimately increased the waiting time for a determination [Access Met decision].(names and personal details blanked out).

From the last request for follow up information from the NDIS until the Access Met decision (with Ministerial intervention) some one hundred and eight days (108) elapsed. Given that the act states that the CEO MUST make a determination within twenty one (21) days from receipt of the application reflects the “shocking state of affairs” within the NDIA.

A specific timeframe (eg; fourteen [14] days) needs to be included in the Guarantee for the approval of the participant’s plan and not generalise to the point of “as soon as reasonably practicable”.

The Access Met decision letter (dated the 12 September 2019) for my wife made reference under the heading “next steps” that “A member of the NDIS team will call you shortly to take you through next steps, including how we will develop what’s called your “First Plan” and arrange your funding and supports”. No call has been received to date and have finally had to contacted the LAC at their front of house as a phone call to them went unanswered after some two and a half minutes and an appointment request email went unanswered (no reply).

The NDIS journey so far has required me to be the proactive one to do all the follow ups and “chasing” to get answers to a system that is so hard to navigate that I have concerns that people out there in the “real world” have given up trying to access what they might rightly deserve and qualify for.

A further note to consider in this review is the role that a State Government Health Department plays in this whole NDIS episode.
The amount of time spent by Social Workers, Specialist Nurses, Occupational Nurses and Senior Medical Administrators is a large impost on their daily routines to cater for their usual outpatients. By this I mean that considerable time is spent on providing NDIS supporting documentation and funded via State Health budgets at the expense of “local” patients. Surely some of that outstanding $1.6B or so excess funding for the NDIS could go in part to the States to help facilitate the types of supporting documentation (and the associated time) that they provide for the NDIS Access requests.

Good luck with the review. I’m looking forward to some very radical changes in the NDIA/NDIS that provides some very succinct guidelines and guarantees.

I give my permission to for this submission to be published on the website.