Get Your Assessment Done Right the First Time

Don’t we just love the word “Assessment”…… NOT!

Anyway, we need to get over it, as assessments are an integral ingredient when it comes to building or reviewing your National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) plan.

One thing for sure is, it can’t be expected that all Allied Health professionals are on the same page when it comes to providing a report that ticks all the boxes for the NDIS.

VALID have developed a 10-step guide to assist Allied Health professionals that is a must-read before they start.

Click here to download a free version of this fantastic resource from VALID.

The picture below is another handy resource that provides a colourful snapshot of the NDIS Act Section 34 that defines “Reasonable & Necessary Supports”.

Never was picked up from respite, yes relinquishment is still happening

Over 50 families relinquish their children with a disability in Victoria every year is a very sad statistic. (Victorian Equal Opportunity & Human Rights Commission Report Desperate Measures-May 2012)

These kids are normally in their late teens, as they transition from school to “where to from here?”

It’s really important that we keep this topic alive, because it’s not going away.

The Desperate Measures Report mentions 23 potential risk factors for relinquishment, and I’ll put it out there & say, it wouldn’t be hard to add extra 10 in this current climate.

The key point to remember is that the National Disability Insurance Scheme was never attended to be a “fix for all”

I’m suggesting that greater engagement with the “new blood” coming into existing professions such as counsellors and social workers needs to happen.

Innovative organisations like “Microboards” could also be considered in some cases, look at their website for more information.

Relinquishment was suggested to my parents when I was born, by a nurse who said “there are special places for babies like this.”My mother quickly replied, “I know, its our home…”

Professional Peer Networks for “Connectors” Yes or No?

Planners, Case Managers, Coordinators & Facilitators play a crucial role when organising supports for people with disabilities and their families.

For the purpose of my brief commentary, I’m going to put all of these roles together and call them “Connectors”.

Whilst Connectors do have specific duties as part of their role they also have areas that overlap.

The one common goal for all Connectors is to help people with disabilities and their families have a better life.

Connectors experience 5 common challengers regularly based on my observations.

  • Having limited time to fully understand the needs of the clients that they support as their life changes
  • Being across the new services that are continually evolving
  • Having to continually suggest the same service providers based on their reputations, existing relationships and the level of trust.
  • Limited knowledge of evolving technologies and how they can be applied to assist clients
  • Not being encouraged to think innovatively by management due to service provider culture and risk management issues.

Interestingly, professions such as speech therapists, occupational therapists, and many other similar professions do have established peer-to-peer networks that allow discussions where similar topics are discussed.

As the National Disability Insurance Scheme evolves with new business and existing service providers rethinking their approach, we need to openly talk about the challenger’s connector’s experience.

Connectors are one of the keys for a successful roll out NDIS, so why aren’t they being supported?

When a peer-to-peer network is created, it is essential that people with disabilities are actively involved.

Choice and control will only happen if connectors are supported.

Communication