NDIS impact on health services

Ms Brynn  Lewin1

1Austin Health, Kew, Australia

Introduction: The National Disability Insurance Scheme brings changes to funding models and supports for individuals with a permanent disability.   It is important for Health Services to understand the impacts for their service and patients and become NDIS ready.

Aim:   to outline the method of becoming NDIS ready that was used by a large metropolitan health service.  The Austin Health NDIS Readiness Project aimed to identify and mitigate risks for the health service, educate and support a large health workforce, minimise impact on patient care and maximise outcomes related to discharge planning.

Approach:  to become NDIS ready, Austin Health implement and evaluated a Health Service Readiness Plan that focused on partnering, governance, risk management and education.  The project was managed by an Occupational Therapist (OT).

Practice Implications:  a strategic approach to NDIS readiness is essential for ensuring patient outcomes during the implementation of the NDIS.  The outcomes of the project are

  • Understanding the role of health in NDIS access and eligibility and associated education needs,
  • Understanding and anticipating barriers to discharge planning,
  • Establishing a comprehensive governance structure and escalation processes,
  • Future planning and practice implications for inpatient clinicians including OT’s.

Conclusion:  the NDIS Readiness Project employed by Austin Health was affective in understanding the impact that the NDIS will have on health services and ensuring excellent care for patients.  Occupational therapists are well positioned to lead NDIS readiness projects.