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NDIS Latest News

By January 28th, 2022No Comments
In this edition:

  • Using NDIS plan funds to claim for rapid antigen tests
  • Honours for disability community
  • COVID-19 kit for support coordinators
  • Accessing free rapid antigen tests
  • A new scholarship for leaders with disability
  • Monthly Data Summary available
  • Participant First Engagement Initiative: help shape the NDIS
  • Coronavirus (COVID-19) information and support
  • Events
  • Participant spotlight


Using NDIS plan funds to claim for rapid antigen tests

NDIS participants can purchase rapid antigen tests (RATs) with funding from their NDIS plan.

Participants with core funding can purchase RATs where it is required to access their reasonable and necessary supports.

Learn more.


Honours for disability community

We would like to extend our congratulations to members of the disability community who have been acknowledged in the 2022 Honours List.

Dylan Alcott (OAM) has been named 2022 Australian of the Year. This is the first time in the award’s 62-year history that a person with a visible disability has been named Australian of the Year.

Dylan was also made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for distinguished service to paralympic sport, particularly to tennis, and as a role model for people with disability, and to the community through a range of organisations.

In accepting Australian of the Year, Dylan said his purpose is changing perceptions so people with disability, people like him, can get out there and live the lives they deserve to live.

Dr Helen Nugent (AO), who stepped down as NDIA Board Chair at the end of last year, received a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC).

John Walsh (AM) was honoured as an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for distinguished service to public health through leadership and advocacy roles.

Sue Salthouse was posthumously honoured as a Member of the Order of Australia (AM). Sue, who before her passing was a member of our Independent Advisory Council, was a fierce advocate for people with disability.

Read more.


COVID-19 kit for support coordinators

The Growing Space and other support coordination providers have developed an online COVID-19 kit for Support Coordinators.

The free downloadable resource contains a range of useful checklists, contacts and templates for support coordinators to help NDIS participants, their families and carers manage risks associated with COVID-19.

You can download this kit on the Growing Space website.


Accessing free rapid antigen tests

You can now access free rapid antigen tests (RATs) if you hold an eligible Commonwealth concession card:

  • Commonwealth Seniors Health Card
  • Department of Veteran’s Affairs Gold, White or Orange Card
  • Health Care Card
  • Low Income Health Card
  • Pensioner Concession Card.

You can access up to 10 RATs over a 3 month period (max 5 over a 1 month period) through community pharmacies.

Learn more.


A new scholarship for leaders with disability

The Australian Network on Disability (AND) and the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) are partnering to remove barriers faced by leaders with disability in securing board positions by increasing their governance knowledge.

This opportunity provides 15 full-fee scholarships in 2022 to leaders with disability to undertake either the Foundations of Directorship program or the Company Directors Course at AICD. In addition, eight months of mentoring with an Australian business leader will also be provided by AND to help maximise board career opportunities.

Leaders with disability can apply until 13 February 2022.


Monthly Summary Data available

As part of our Public Data Release schedule we are now releasing monthly summary data reports on our website. Releasing data to the public is part of our commitment in the NDIS Participant Service Charter to be transparent.

The monthly summary helps show how the Scheme is progressing over a shorter time frame. You can find the December monthly summary here.


Participant First Engagement Initiative: help shape the NDIS

The Participant First Engagement Initiative helps us to connect with participants, families, carers and non-participants with disabilities to hear your feedback, so we can work together on improving the Scheme.

We want to draw on your lived experience of disability to help improve the NDIS for everyone. We are looking for a mix of participants, families and carers for a range of future opportunities that may include; online and email feedback, one on one or small group discussions or, working directly with project teams to design a product or policy.

Sign up by completing the Participant First information form.

Learn more.


Coronavirus (COVID-19) information and support

Booking a COVID-19 vaccine
All Australians are encouraged to have the free COVID-19 vaccine.

All NDIS participants aged 5 and over, their carers and support workers are eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.

You are now also eligible for a COVID-19 booster dose if:

  • you are 18 years and older, and
  • had your second dose of your primary course of COVID-19 vaccination at least 4 months ago (3 or more months ago for Victorians)

A booster dose will help you to stay safe against COVID-19.

More information about the benefits of a booster dose.

Book in for your vaccination today. To book a COVID-19 vaccine appointment:

  • use the COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic Finder on the Department of Health website
  • book through a local pharmacy
  • contact the National Coronavirus and COVID-19 Vaccination Helpline on 1800 020 080
  • talk to your GP and book in for your vaccination today.

People with disability who need assistance booking a COVID-19 vaccine or need free, fact-checked information about COVID-19 can contact the Disability Gateway on 1800 643 787 or visit their website.

If you are deaf, or hard of hearing you can call the National Relay Service on 1800 555 660.

Easy Read resources, including on vaccine types, are available on the Department of Health website.

Participants who have support coordination in their plans and need support to book and access COVID-19 vaccinations are encouraged to talk to their support coordinator.

An additional $150, on top of plan funds, is available for participants to access support coordination for help with booking and accessing vaccinations.

Participants can also utilise their existing Support Coordination budget should they need further assistance beyond the additional $150.

Learn more.

Support for participants to access a COVID-19 vaccine booster
We are helping you to access the COVID-19 vaccination including the booster dose.

Some providers can claim $150, to help you get your primary course of COVID-19 vaccination. Providers have until 31 March 2022 to help you if you need their support.

These providers can also claim $75 when they have helped you to get a COVID-19 vaccine booster.

Providers can help if you want to have your COVID-19 vaccination at your GP’s office or at a vaccination hub.

You can discuss with your provider how to best access the COVID-19 vaccination.

Providers claim the $150 and $75 payments directly from the NDIS – it does not affect funding in your plan.

Your provider can also claim from your plan, the cost of other supports required for you to access your vaccinations, such as transport and support workers, but only with your agreement.

If you think your plan funds are too low for you to get vaccination support, you can contact us, phone 1800 800 110.

Providers need your consent before they can make vaccination appointments for you.

You can talk with your GP and other health professionals about the COVID-19 vaccination. You can ask whether you should receive the vaccine. It is your decision to get vaccinated and you can have support to make a decision.

Visit our website for more information.

Expanding temporary COVID-19 meal preparation and delivery support

From 12 January 2022, if you normally have a support worker help you with meal preparation at home, you can temporarily use your Core supports budget to pay for a meal preparation and delivery service instead.

This means that instead of paying for a support worker to assist you with shopping or meal preparation, you can pay an external provider to prepare your meal and deliver it to you.

This arrangement is available in all states and territories and will continue through to 28 February 2022.

You cannot use NDIS funds to buy food. The NDIS can only cover the cost of preparing a meal and having it delivered to you.

This is a different way to use your current Core supports budget, we won’t be adding funding to your plan without a plan review.

Visit our website for more information

Disability Liaison Officers are available to help people with a disability access vaccinations.

They can arrange vaccination appointment times and locations suited to your needs, ensure the right supports are there waiting, arrange group bookings or drive-through bookings where you don’t need to leave the car, or have someone come to your home if you are unable to leave it.

To arrange a vaccination that meets your needs contact Disability Liaison Officer Support today.

Preparing for your child’s vaccination
As a parent or carer, there are a number of things you can consider before you take your child for their COVID-19 vaccine, to help make it a positive experience for them.

If your child is anxious about receiving the vaccine or has additional needs, planning ahead and talking to them and your GP can help. The factsheet below has information on things to consider or discuss with your child. This includes what support they may need and guidance on where you book your child to receive the vaccine.

Learn more.

If you live in Queensland, have not had the COVID-19 vaccine, and need assistance to get vaccinated in your home, there are a number of ways for you to get the vaccine:

  • You can speak to your GP or other health provider and ask for assistance. They may be able to come to your home to vaccinate you or organise for someone else to do so.
  • You can call the Primary Health Network in your area and talk to them about your needs and ask for assistance.
  • You can also call 134 COVID (13 42 68) and ask for assistance.
  • If you are deaf or hard of hearing, please contact the National Relay Service on 1800 555 727 and ask to be directed to a health service. They can connect you to 134 COVID (13 42 68).

New South Wales
The Council for Intellectual Disability have created an Easy Read resource about how to register a positive COVID-19 rapid antigen test in New South Wales.

Learn more.



Visit the events page of our website to see a list of current events we are running on a range of NDIS topics, including COVID-19 information specific events.

Where there are COVID-19 restrictions the events will be held online.

You can search for events near you, or on a topic relevant to you.

Find an event.


Participant spotlight

Nathan’s performance impressed his music idol.

NDIS participant Nathan was thrilled to learn that music legend Peter Gabriel watched his short film. Titled Remote, his work captured the thoughts and feelings of people with disability on the events of the last two years.

Nathan uses his NDIS funding on support to attend Options Theatre Company, as he works towards his main goal, to become a professional actor.

Read more about Nathan’s story.

Read more about NDIS participants and their stories.