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NDIS Review: A response to ‘moving from defining problems to defining solutions.’

17 Oct 2023



Noah’s Ark welcomes the opportunity to comment on the Independent Review of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). The NDIS is a generous funding program which is still early in its evolution.

This response will discuss two issues critical to the future of services for children with disabilities and their families.

The first issue is how the NDIS can be better aligned with the other services and supports that contribute to the development of children with a disability. The NDIS has been characterised as isolated or “an oasis in the desert”. Contributing to this situation is a lack of clarity about the role of different supports to children with disabilities and how they can complement each other. These supports include families, community, educational settings and services.

It is proposed that the lack of a broader policy framework on improving the lives of children with disabilities and their families is addressed so that the role and contribution of the NDIS can be better defined. Some possible steps have been identified, including the adoption of an ecological framework, the development of a national strategy for children with disabilities, and the development of a guiding story.

The second issue is the nature of the workforce that will best deliver outcomes for children with disabilities. The implementation of the NDIS has followed a market model. There has been a focus on the size of the market. There is now a significantly different workforce providing services to children with disabilities compared to the specialised workforce which preceeded it. Given the uniqueness of the impacts of childhood disability, a specialised workforce has several advantages. Consideration needs to be given to how a specialised workforce can be sustained within the NDIS.

Read the full submission

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Submission to the Independent Review of the NDIS

This paper discusses the lack of an Australian blueprint or strategy for children with disabilities and their families.

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