Health professionals, psychosocial disability and the NDIS

Project Overview

The aim of the project is to identify how health professionals can be supported to assist consumers with psychosocial disability to access the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). With its clinical member organisations, Mental Health Australia will consult health professionals about their views on initiatives that will work best for them to help their consumers to have a better NDIS access experience.  A project report will provide advice to the Department of Social Services (DSS) and the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) about these initiatives and their implementation.

Through consultation with our member health professional organisations Mental Health Australia will:

  • Analyse the experiences of, and opportunities taken by, health professionals to support people to access the NDIS,
  • Identify the barriers experienced by health professionals in assisting people with psychosocial disability to access the NDIS, and
  • Develop recommendations about appropriate initiatives to improve pathways for people with psychosocial disability from health services to NDIS.


Submissions to the Joint Parliamentary Committee on the NDIS and the Productivity Commission NDIS Costs Study highlight widespread and persistent stakeholder concerns with the interface between the NDIS and mainstream systems, and in particular the health system.

With the majority of future participants with psychosocial disability still outside the NDIS, an urgent priority is to identify and address the barriers to NDIS access via the health system. 

Project Outputs

The project outputs will include:

  • A list of initiatives, that would help health professionals to facilitate access to the NDIS for people with psychosocial disability,
  • An increased awareness of health professionals about what the NDIS offers people with psychosocial disability,
  • Advice to the NDIA on refinements to the psychosocial pathway, and
  • Advice to the Department of Social Services on matters of policy that affect this cohort where they relate to the intersection of the NDIS access process and health services.

Stakeholder engagement

In line with the project focus on health professionals, the Mental Health Australia members that will be consulted are:

  • Australian Association of Social Workers
  • Australian Clinical Psychology Association
  • Australian College of Mental Health Nurses
  • Australian Psychological Society
  • Dietitians Association of Australia
  • Occupational Therapy Australia
  • Royal Australian College of General Practitioners
  • The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists

In addition, Mental Health Australia will seek the views of consumer and carer representatives and community mental health organisations which are Mental Health Australia members and deliver NDIS services.

Contact Us

For any project enquiries, please contact Emma Coughlan at