Having adequate and timely help is crucial, particularly when living with a disability. The Australian government acknowledges this need and created the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in response.
What Does the NDIS Do?
The primary objective of the NDIS is to help you identify the support you need to attain your ideal standard of living, and this may involve consultations with a NDIS exercise physiologist. Through the NDIS, you get more control and choice in the timing and manner of your support receipt throughout your lifetime. The program also provides early intervention when needed, particularly in cases where it will help reduce the impact of your disability.
Eligibility for the NDIS
Eligibility for NDIS is based on the following criteria:
The target age range for NDIS recipients is 7 to 65 years. However, there are some exceptions.
First, you can still access support for your child if they are under 7. This exemption occurs via NDIS’ early childhood approach that links you with an NDIS partner with whom you discuss your circumstances. The early childhood partner will help determine whether NDIS is the best approach for your child.
Conversely, NDIS offers support to eligible applicants over 65 through My Aged Care- an alternative program with similar goals.
NDIS is only available to Australian citizens, permanent residents and those holding a Protected Special Category Visa. You must also reside in Australia.
Accessing the NDIS is reliant on your disability type. To qualify, your disability must result from one or more permanent impairments. In this case, the term ‘impairment’ refers to a significant change or loss in bodily structure, function, or ability to learn or think.
Therefore, part of your application for the NDIS includes submitting evidence that your disability stems from cognitive, neurological, intellectual, physical, sensory or psychosocial impairment. In addition, you have to provide proof that your impairment is lifelong. Conversely, you may be ineligible for the NDIS if your impairment is temporary, you are already receiving treatment, or there are as yet exhausted care options available.
On the other hand, your eligibility isn’t affected by the cause of your impairment (It can be something you’ve had since birth, a result of an accident or injury, or something that developed over time).
Please consult this list for a guideline of eligible impairments.
However, please note that some exceptions, particular to support for hearing services, apply. You can find more details here.
Some need-based criteria may provide a significant advantage when applying for the NDIS. They include impairments that necessitate:
- Support that ensures successful participation in daily living.
- Present support structures that offset or reduce the future impact of the impairment on your everyday life.
- Support for familial skill development vital in helping you.
However, please note that the NDIS doesn’t provide treatment funding. Instead, the program funds the support necessary to help you manage an impairment’s impact on your daily life.
How to Apply for the NDIS
Want to apply for NDIS? Upon confirming your eligibility, you can begin applying by:
- Contacting your local NDIS office or Area Coordinator for help navigating the process.
- Filling out an application by phone. (Here are the NDIS contact details and locations)
- Completing an online application (known as an Access Request Form). It is available via this link.
Finally, remember that a helping hand is no longer out of reach. So, sign up and take advantage of your NDIS benefits today.