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NDIS Funding

The Autism Association are a registered provider for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in Western Australia. Talk to our Autism Advisors to find out about the options available so we can help you to achieve your NDIS plan goals and make sure that you are accessing all funding available for you and your family.

The NDIS can at times be confusing and difficult to navigate on your own but we are here to support you every step of the way with a range of information and resources designed to help support you through the process.

About the NDIS

NDIS stands for National Disability Insurance Scheme. It is the new way of providing support to people with disability in Australia delivered by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) has been fully rolled out in Western Australia. 

The NDIS is an Australian scheme providing a new way for individuals with Autism to get the disability support they need. The NDIS takes a person-centred approach through individualised funding plans. This means that you are at the centre of the decision-making process about how you want to live your life, your choice of supports, and who you would like to deliver your supports. It is designed to provide you with choice, control and independence.

Below you can read about the key principles of the NDIS funding. For more information and to assist you throughout you application process, the NDIS have a three-part participant booklet for additional information. 

The NDIS takes a person-centred approach through individualised funding plans to decide what types of funding will help you to achieve your goals. This means that YOU are at the centre of the decision making process about how you want to live your life, your choice of supports and who you would like to deliver your supports. It is designed to provide you with choice, control and independence.

The NDIS will pay for support that is:

  • Related to the person’s disability
  • Represents value for money
  • Likely to be effective and beneficial to the person with disability

Your Autism diagnosis is the key to accessing the NDIS. However, it is important to remember that it is the impact of your Autism diagnosis on your everyday life that will be the most important factor in helping to determine what types of funded supports you need and how much funding you will receive.

The NDIS provides Australians with peace of mind that if they, their child or loved one is diagnosed with Autism, they will get the support they need. The NDIS invests early in people with Autism so the quality of life can be improved significantly and to ensure they need less funded support later on in their lives.

 

Our NDIS services

As a registered provider, we deliver services under the following NDIS budgets for individuals with a diagnosis of Autism. If you would like more information on the NDIS services we provide, or do not have a diagnosis, please contact an Autism Advisor for more information on (08) 9489 8900 or at autismwa@autism.org.au.

Start your Journey with us! 

There are certain requirements that you must meet in order to receive NDIS funding. To determine if you are eligible you must meet the criteria below:

  • You must have a permanent disability that significantly affects your ability to take part in everyday activities.
  • You must be under 65 years old.
  • You must be an Australian citizen, permanent resident or hold a Special Protected Category Visa.

If you already have an NDIS plan – skip ahead to step 5 to see how you can put your plan into action.

Children under 7 years of age

The process of accessing NDIS funding looks different for young children.

The Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) approach is available to children aged under than 7 with a developmental delay or disability. This means your child doesn’t need a diagnosis of Autism to access ECEI support.

Contact our Autism Advisor Program and we will support you through pre-planning and linking into NDIA funding with Wanslea (ECEI partner for WA), as well as address your questions and provide you access to other support we have available.

If you want to apply directly, you can download an Access Request Form on the NDIS website.

Individuals aged 7 to 65 years

You can download an Access Request Form on the NDIS website. You will need to complete the form which asks you for basic information so NDIA can confirm your identity, age and citizenship. You will also need to provide information about your Autism diagnosis and how it impacts your everyday life.

You could do a Verbal Access Request over the phone with the NDIA. This means they will take your basic information over the phone. Remember to ask for a reference number for your records.

NDIA will then send you a form to request evidence of the functional impacts of your Autism diagnosis.

We recommend you send any paperwork including reports to NDIA via email so that you have a record of them.

It should take NDIA 21 days to respond to your access request and you will be advised of the eligibility outcome via post.

Contact our Autism Advisor Team and we can support you through this process, address your questions and provide information to link you into services and support options through a one-to-one, confidential conversation on the phone.

Once your NDIS eligibility has been confirmed, you will need to start thinking about your immediate support needs and the current and future goals you want to achieve.

It can be hard to think about this all on your own and The Autism Association is here to help.

We hold regular NDIS information sessions for people with Autism and their families. This short information session covers how to access the NDIS and information on planning and implementing an NDIS plan.

Once you receive your eligibility, you can book in a pre-planning meeting with an Autism Advisor at one of our centres or over the phone. Generally, this pre-planning meeting takes about 1 ½ hours and will include a discussion about how the autism diagnosis impacts your everyday life as this is the most important information you need to share with your NDIA.

Experienced staff at the Autism Association of WA are available to provide information and support to families. If you would like support in the ‘pre-planning’ stages of creating your NDIS support plan please contact us.

You will be contacted by a NDIA representative (ECEI partner or local area coordinator) to book in a planning meeting.  The Local Area Coordinators are APM and Mission Australia and they cover different areas in WA.

The meetings generally take place face-to-face and it can be at your home or in the community (such as your child’s schools).

The planning meetings are never quite the same for everyone but in your meeting your representative will work with you to explore your support needs and goals. This includes having a conversation with you about your current circumstances and support that you already receive.

They will explore what is working well and what are some of the barriers in achieving your goals. LACs and ECEI partners do not decide on your funding, someone else at the NDIA does that.

Some top tips:

  1. Start early – think about your goals and the support you need in order to achieve them. Completing a pre-planning workbook always helps.
  2. Focus on functional goals and the skills you need to learn.
  3. Take someone with you – bring along a family member, service provider or an advocate to attend the planning meeting with you.
  4. Get your documents ready – bring any supporting documents for example, school reports, diagnostic reports, therapist’s report and reports from current services.
  5. Complete a Carers statement (if you are carer/parent) – this can help you describe the care you need to provide for your family member with Autism and the impact this has on you.
  6. Request for a support coordinator – if you feel you are going to need help in implementing your plan and linking in with providers, you may want to ask for a support coordinator. NDIA will decide whether this is reasonable and necessary for you.

Your NDIA representative will ask how you want your NDIS funding to be managed. This is an important decision, so you need to think about it before you go into the meeting. There are three options which are detailed below. Alternatively, you can have a combination of management methods in a plan. For example, one budget could be NDIA managed and another could be self-managed.

  1. NDIA/agency Managed – NDIA will pay for your services on your behalf. The service provider(s) you choose must be registered with the NDIS and they are responsible for meeting legal obligations and subjected to the NDIS price guide.
  2. Self-managed – You or your representative receives and manages the funding. You will be entering into a legal contract with the NDIA to ensure the funding must be spent in accordance to your plan.  Funds will be paid into your nominated bank accounts and you must keep the invoices/receipts. You will need to use the myplace portal to submit claims and manage your funding ongoing. You can access any providers that will help you achieve your goals.
  3. Plan-managed – Having the flexibility to engage any providers including hiring your own staff, and the invoices will be paid by a plan management company.  NDIA can give you a separate budget to engage with a plan manager.

Reading your NDIS Support Plan

There are three sections in an NDIS support plan:

  1. Section 1: your profile – This section has basic information about where you live, your family and friends and services you access in the community.
  2. Section 2: your short term and long-term goals and who is supporting you to achieve the goals
  3. Section 3: the funded support – An NDIS support plan will specify how much funding you will receive in order to help achieve your goals. The budget will be broken into three parts: 

Core  – The most flexible budget in your plan is core support. The funding can be used towards helping you to get everyday activities done and accessing the community Example: paying a support worker to help you access the community

Capacity building – The Capacity Building budgets can help you build the skills to become more independent and reach your goals. Example:  therapy services, social skills groups, employment assistance, support coordination. 

Capital – Capital Supports funding can be used for equipment, assistive technology and home or vehicle modifications.

Putting your plan in action

If you requested support with implementing the plan you may be able to engage a support coordinator, who can help you to find service providers and manage your plan.

You will need to contact service providers that can assist you with achieving the goals in your plan.

To find out more about the services you can access with your plan, click here.

NDIA have an online participant portal called myplace. You can use the portal to monitor and manage your funding. If you haven’t already, It’s a good idea to start setting up a MyGov account in preparation for your access to the myplace portal.

Assuming you are happy with your plan, you will engage with your providers throughout the year. NDIA will contact you six weeks before your plan is going to expire to arrange a plan review meeting.  NDIA will request your current services to provide progress reports. In this review meeting, your next plan will be developed.

What if you are not happy with the decision made by the NDIA?

You can apply for an internal review of a decision within three months of the NDIS plan start date.  This will be done by someone else was not involved with developing your original plan.

If you are still not happy with outcome of the internal review of a decision, you can go to the Administrative Tribunal to appeal.

What if your circumstances and support needs change during the plan?

If your circumstances change prior to your plan review date, then you can complete a ‘Change of Circumstances’ form (link to the NDIA website). NDIA will assess the information and decide if an early review of your plan is reasonable.

Contact us to find out what services we can offer you under your NDIS plan.

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Frequently asked questions

Q: Who manages the NDIS?

The NDIS is managed by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA). The NDIA has Planners who you will meet with to assist you to develop a plan for a person with Autism and access the funding.

Q: Who is a Planner?

A Planner is a person who works as a representative of the NDIS. The Planner works with participants to create their individual support plan.

Q: What is a Participant?

A Participant is an individual whose access request has been determined ‘eligible’, has an individual support plan and their supports paid for by the NDIS.

If you have an NDIS plan, you are considered a Participant of the scheme.

Q: Will the NDIS cost me anything?

Not directly. Just like Medicare, the NDIS is a universal insurance scheme paid through tax contributions.

The NDIS is not means tested and does not affect Disability Support Pension payments. The Scheme is designed to work alongside existing mainstream services like health, education and housing.

Q: How long does it take to apply?

Upon receiving a valid access request, with all relevant information and evidence about your disability or impairment, the NDIA must respond within 21 days.

In some cases, the NDIA may need more documents, assessments or evidence, which means it might take longer for your request to be assessed. 

Once NDIA contact you, you then need to wait for your Planning appointment, which may take some time.

While you wait, there are free or low-cost services you can access from the Autism Association of WA. Check out our training page or contact us to find out more.

Q: Will I be able to review my plan before it is finalised?

It’s unlikely. Mostly people receive copies of their plans after they have been finalised following the planning meeting. You can, however, contact your Planner after you receive your plan if you’re not happy with it.

Make sure you take down your Planner’s name and number when you speak with them, so you can contact them directly in future if you need to.

There is also a formal review process in place if you are still unsatisfied with the outcome (see below ‘What happens if I’m not happy with my plan or the decisions made?’).

Q: I have an NDIS plan now what?

Great! Now you can start looking and different services that you can access with the funding in your NDIS plan.

You can visit our Services page to find out more about what services you can access through the Autism Association. To speak to someone about options, call us on 9489 8900.

The prices we charge for the services we provide under the NDIS are aligned with the NDIS Price Guide.

Autism Association NDIS Service Prices.

Q: I’ve just been diagnosed with Autism, am I eligible for the NDIS?

A diagnosis of Autism may mean you are eligible for NDIS, and we always recommend that you contact the NDIA to apply.

In order to apply for the NDIS you will need formal reports from the people who diagnosed you.

You may meet the disability requirements if:

  • You have an impairment or condition that is likely to be permanent (i.e. it is likely to be lifelong) and
  • Your impairment substantially reduces your ability to participate effectively in activities, or perform tasks or actions unless you have assistance from other people or
  • You can’t participate effectively even with assistance or aides and equipment and
  • Your impairment affects your capacity for social and economic participation and
  • You are likely to require support under the NDIS for your lifetime.

You can check if you’re eligible for the NDIS here and you can download an Access Request Form on the NDIS website.

Q: My child is on a waitlist to be assessed for Autism, can I apply?

A child under the age of six may be eligible for the NDIS without a formal diagnosis of Autism under the Early Intervention requirements.

In order to be eligible for Early Intervention under the NDIS your child under the age of 6 must:

  • Have substantially reduced functional capacity in one or more of the areas of self-care, receptive and expressive language, cognitive development or motor development and
  • results in the need for a combination and sequence of special interdisciplinary or generic care, treatment or other services which are of extended duration, and are individually planned and coordinated; and
  • those supports are most appropriately funded through the NDIS, and not through another service system.

In order to apply for the NDIS you will need formal reports about your child a qualified medical or allied health professional, such as a Paediatrician. 

Q: What happens if I’m not happy with my plan or the decisions made?

If you think a decision made by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) about you is wrong, you can submit an application for internal review of a decision. Any person directly affected by a decision of the NDIA can request such a review.

When you are told about an NDIA decision, you will be told how to request an internal review. A request for internal review of a decision must be made within three months of receiving notice of the decision from the NDIA. The staff member who works on the internal review will not have been involved in the earlier decision.

They may want to talk to you directly as part of this process. Please visit the NDIS website here for further information or refer to our blog “What to do if you’re unhappy with your NDIS plan”.

Q: How can the Autism Association help me prepare for the NDIS?

We are committed to helping people with Autism to ensure they are heard, supported and have the information they need about moving to the NDIS.

There are a number of ways we can help:

  • We are able to offer one-on-one pre-planning meetings to assist you in preparing for your first meeting with your NDIA planner. 
  • If you are currently receiving services from us, you can ask your current support team to meet with you to help you prepare for the transition.  We are also able to support you during your NDIA planning meeting, if you’d like us to.
  • We hold regular NDIS Information Sessions called ‘Getting to Know the NDIS‘ for people with a disability and those who support them – check our Training page to see when sessions are being held near you.
  • Read our Fact Sheet – What’s Involved in Joining the NDIS?
  • Sign up for our e-newsletter to get all the latest NDIS news and updates.
  • Check out our Facebook page too, where we post the latest NDIS updates.

Q: Who can I contact for more information?

For more information on the NDIS, you can contact the National Disability Insurance Agency on 1800 800 110 between 8am and 8pm (EST) weekdays or visit www.ndis.gov.au.

You can also visit the NDIS office in Perth Hills which is located at 78–80 Railway Parade (corner Marion Street), Midland.

If you have any questions –contact an Autism Advisor for more information on (08) 9489 8900 or at autismwa@autism.org.au.

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