NDIS Capacity Building Project Update – 6 April 2016

In this edition of the NDIS Mental Health Network update, Mental Health Australia is pleased to announce that Richmond Wellbeing has been engaged to develop and deliver NDIS peer education and train‑the‑trainer workshops nationally as a part of Mental Health Australia’s NDIS Sector Development Fund Capacity Building Project.

This update also provides information about:

  • a review of NDIS pricing for personal care and community participation
  • an open consultation on NDIS Specialist Disability Accommodation
  • NDIS and mental health as discussed at Mental Health Australia’s Members Policy Forum
  • NDIS Local Area Coordination partners in Victoria
  • the roll out of the NDIS in Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania
  • the latest transcript from the Parliamentary Joint Standing Committee on the NDIS
  • NDIS NSW Market Position Statement
  • a NSW Mental Health Commission video on NDIS and mental health
  • a recent NDIS Remote Disability Services Provider Forum
  • the latest NDIS e-Newsletter.

Richmond Wellbeing to design and deliver NDIS peer workshops nationally

Mental Health Australia is very excited to have engaged Richmond Wellbeing to design and deliver NDIS peer education and train-the-trainer workshops nationally as a part of Mental Health Australia’s NDIS Sector Development Fund Capacity Building Project.

Richmond Wellbeing will deliver NDIS mental health peer education modules in each state/territory, tailored to local needs and designed to:

  • Improve understanding of the operation of the NDIS and the principles which underpin it among people with psychosocial disability and their carers
  • Build the capacity of people with psychosocial disability and their carers to exercise choice and control
  • Encourage and enable people with psychosocial disability to move towards self management, greater independence and meaningful community inclusion.

Information about these workshops will be published on the Mental Health Australia website and circulated via this NDIS Mental Health Network. For training specifics and event details, subscribe to the Richmond Wellbeing Mailing List here.

Open Consultation: NDIS Price Reviews on Personal Care and Community Participation

You might have already read in Mental Health Australia’s weekly CEO updates that the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) is reviewing some of the supports across ‘personal care’ and ‘community participation’. The NDIA has published a discussion paper on its website outlining the review’s key issues. You’re invited to submit your “views and evidence about current price controls and options for change” by Monday 11 April 2016. The discussion paper and information on how to submit your feedback is available from the website (click here).

While there are a large number of questions in the discussion paper, our recent discussions with the NDIA indicate a keen interest in receiving information from mental health providers regarding the cost drivers for NDIS-funded services, even where this may not correspond precisely with the format of the current review. We therefore encourage organisations to submit any information they feel is relevant to the task of describing and accurately pricing NDIS-funded services for people with psychosocial disability. For example, some organisations may wish to focus on one question in particular or may wish to submit anecdotal evidence to support their submission.

Open Consultation: NDIS Specialist Disability Accommodation

Last Friday, the NDIA released the Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) Position Paper on Draft Pricing and Payments. The NDIA designed the paper to “provide advice to the market and to give stakeholders the opportunity to provide feedback on the proposed approach.”

The paper recognises some participants accommodation needs are not met by the housing market. This includes participants who need accommodation in properties, which minimise the effects of the features of their disability, including as a result of significant psychosocial impairments. By way of example, the NDIA refers to “psychosocial conditions which may have physical sequelae due to long term medication use, such as schizophrenia”.

Broadly, the paper outlines the pricing approach, discusses demand and assessment considerations and also looks at administrative arrangements. The NDIA is looking for feedback on the paper by Friday 15 April 2016. You can access the paper and find out how to submit feedback on the NDIS website (click here).

NDIS and Mental Health discussed at Mental Health Australia’s Members Policy Forum

Mental Health Australia holds two policy forums for its members each year. It’s a chance for the membership of Mental Health Australia (to see our members click here) to get together and discuss the most important policy issues for Mental Health Australia to pursue. Our most recent forum was held on 30 March at Old Parliament House in Canberra. One of the key issues on the agenda was the NDIS and mental health.

A representative from the NDIA attended to discuss the Operational Access Review; a project run by the NDIA to improve the existing administrative arrangements for people with psychosocial disability accessing the NDIS (see project scope here). The best way to keep up to date with information about the Operational Access Review is by reading the NDIA Mental Health Sector Reference Group communiques published on the NDIA website after each meeting (click here).

Mental Health Australia members raised questions and provided comments regarding continuity of care for people with psychosocial disability who are not eligible to access the NDIS, the application process for people who have a psychosocial disability and another disability, how the concurrent NDIS and mental health reforms could be most effectively managed (particularly in relation to the Information, Linkages and Capacity Building component of NDIS), and how support for mental health carers could be accessed under the NDIS.

Mental Health Australia was pleased that the NDIA was open to receiving questions and continuing dialogue with the sector across the range of issues that were raised. As always, we encourage you to keep in touch about any issues you encounter so that we can seek clarification from the NDIA and other agencies and pass on any new information through our networks.

Local Area Coordination in Victoria

On Thursday 24 March the NDIA announced that the following organisations would partner with the NDIA to deliver Local Area Coordination services in Victoria:

  • Brotherhood of St Laurence in North East Melbourne
  • Latrobe Community Health Service in Central Highlands
  • Intereach in Loddon. 

The NDIA says these organisations will work with participants to:

  • Provide assistance to connect to and build informal and natural supports
  • Provide assistance with the planning process and effective implementation
  • Work with non-participants as part of ILC
  • Work with community, providers and mainstream to build inclusion and awareness of the needs of people with disability.

More information is available on the NDIA website (click here).

NDIS roll out in Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania

The NDIA has announced the roll out of the NDIS in Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania. Details about how the NDIS will roll out in each of these states is available on the NDIS website at:

Parliamentary Joint Standing Committee on the NDIS Transcript – the Hunter Trial Site

The Parliamentary Joint Standing Committee on the NDIS has published a transcript of a public hearing held in Newcastle on 7 March 2016, reviewing the implementation of the NDIS in the Hunter trial site.

The full transcript is available on the Parliament of Australia website (click here).

NSW NDIS Market Position Statement

In March, the NDIA released the NDIS Market Position Statement for New South Wales. The purpose of this document is to provide information to current and prospective providers about NDIS related market opportunities.

The NDIA has highlighted the following findings:

  • “More people: The NSW market for disability supports is estimated to grow from 78,000 people in 2016 to 142,000 in 2019
  • More funding: The level of annual expenditure is estimated to grow from $3.4 billion to $6.8 billion in 2019
  • More jobs: The workforce required to service this demand is estimated to grow from 24,750 - 30,250 to 48,400 - 59,200 FTE in 2019
  • The biggest markets will be South Western Sydney and Hunter New England, with Western Sydney a high growth market
  • Scheme experience in the Hunter trial site shows the largest support category by committed funding is Assistance with daily life and represents almost 80 per cent of funded supports to date
  • Western Sydney: The Western Sydney market will see another 8,100 participants enter the NDIS, a growth of $390 million in funded supports, and an additional 2,700 - 3,300 FTE in jobs to deliver these services.”

The NDIA is also asking for feedback on the report. The full report and instructions on how to provide feedback are available on the NDIA website (click here).

NSW Mental Health Commission Video on NDIS and mental health

The NSW Mental Health Commission has published a video on the NDIS and mental health. The video features mental health consumer participants and a mental health carer in the Hunter NDIS trial site and shows the potential of the NDIS to support people with psychosocial disability.

The video is available on Youtube (click here).

NDIS Remote Disability Services Provider Forum

The NDIA recently ran a forum in Adelaide seeking feedback from remote disability service providers about effective implementation of the NDIS in remote Australia.

The NDIA provided an update on its broad approach to analysing, shaping and (only where necessary) intervening in the NDIS market. At a national policy level, the NDIA indicated that the NDIS Rural and Remote Strategy is due to be released in April 2016 and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Engagement Strategy and Action Plan will be released in June 2016. The NDIA also acknowledged that the Information, Linkages and Capacity Building component of the NDIS may need to look different in remote locations.

The NDIA is undertaking the following activities in relation to implementation of the NDIS in remote Australia:

  • “Engaging/talking to people with disability and providers in remote areas
  • mapping supply gaps in the 741 remote/very remote towns and communities
  • building an evidence base of cost of service delivery in remote areas
  • evaluating possible initiatives/interventions that NDIA might use to address supply issues
  • piloting a program to support remote trial site providers with NDIS-readiness
  • collaborating with other agencies on capacity-building for discrete Indigenous communities
  • launching a remote disability service special interest group.”

You can register your interest in joining the special interest group on the NDIS website (click here).

Forum participants provided productive feedback around barriers to effective implementation of the NDIS in remote Australia stressing the lack of services and difficulties recruiting and retaining skilled staff. Participants also highlighted many innovative solutions some of which shared as a central component drawing on existing community strengths as imperative to achieving positive outcomes as a result of NDIS implementation.

NDIS March e-Newsletter

The NDIA has released the latest NDIS e-newsletter, which is available on the NDIS website (click here). The newsletter covers the roll out of the NDIS in Queensland, information about the Intellectual Disability Reference Group, participant stories, a reminder about the Information, Linkages and Capacity building consultation and information about the NDIS NSW Market Position Statement.

Please share your NDIS story

Mental Health Australia is very interested in hearing about your experiences with the NDIS, whether you are a person experiencing psychosocial disability, a carer of someone with a psychosocial disability or a service provider.  Your experiences help us understand how the NDIS rollout is working on the ground and provide informed and timely feedback to government. So please share your story with us at ndis@mhaustralia.org

Keep in touch

To make sure you stay up to date between NDIS Mental Health Network Updates, make sure you like Mental Health Australia’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/AUMentalHealth/

If this email has been forwarded to you and you would like to subscribe to receive this newsletter regularly, please visit https://mhaustralia.org/form/sign-our-newsletters.

If you have any questions about the above please email Emma Coughlan at ndis@mhaustralia.org.

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NDIS, NDIS Project Update, NDIS Capacity Building Project, NDIS Mental Health Network Update