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Submission SUB-B0P7-003450 (Anonymous)

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10 areas for improvement
How can we empower you through the planning process?

What is not easy is knowing what specific supports can be utilised with your funding. It's great to have this bank of funds, but not if you don't know what the funds can provide you or can't access the specific supports that best target their goals. For example, my child would benefit from social groups where they work together on projects or towards a common goal (team work and emotion regulation), but the program I had in mind can only use a child's core funding. The groups which use her capacity building fund have a greater language focus. Her language is exceptional and therefore, do not target her NDIS goal.

What is the best way to provide supports for those not in the NDIS?

It appears that clincians have increased their fees to be in line with what they can charge through the NDIS. E.g. Speech therapy sessions were previously around $100 per session, but now are $250 per session. As a result, unless you are funded by the NDIS, you cannot afford these services. Some children just have articulation difficulties, not disabilities. Despite what people think, school systems do not offer speech therapy to their students as the speech pathologists who work for the Department of Education and Catholic Education, do not have the capacity.

What is the best way to support children with disability… and those with emerging developmental concerns?

There are too few clinicians working with children and therefore parents are unable to access these supports at the vital time. Most agencies conduct the assessments to identify concerns but do not offer the therapy. Children sit on waitlists.
Train more clinicians who actually offer the required support.

How can the market be better designed, structured and supported?

Train more therapists. There is a huge shortage of educational and developmental psychologists for example. With only 4 or 5 APAC approved Master of Educational Psychology programs in the country, how can you expect to meet the need?

How should outcomes and performance be measured and shared?

Encourage more research into particular therapies to build evidence. For example, Neurofeedback is slowly developing a large positive evidence base, however, there is currently not enough evidence for it to be considered a valid therapy for many NDIS clients.

How would you build better outcomes or goals into your plan?

There seems to be a belief that very few benefits from therapy are long term as disabilities are lifelong. Therefore, anything that claims to create long term change is questioned. While a disability such as Autism is lifelong, all the signs and symptoms don't have to be. There are many therapies that help clients to reduce the impact of their difficulties to the point that they are less invasive. These therapies are not a cure, nor to they claim to be. But they do allow the opportunity for the client to live a life less impacted by their disability

What does good service from someone helping you navigate the NDIS look like?

Perhaps there are too many case managers who see their clients as numbers rather than individuals. They group all people with a particular disability as requiring a particular amount of specific supports. E.g. All children with ASD require expressive language intervention. All children with an Intellectual Developmental Disorder need to improve their motor skills.