The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) requires improved collaboration across governments and services to succeed, new research has suggested.
A study by the University of Sydney and the Young People In Nursing Homes National Alliance (YPINH) said the complex health and disability needs of the Australian population will necessitate a whole-of-government approach.
The NDIS is a large-scale government healthcare initiative that aims to provide flexible, individualised support for eligible disabled people.
Ros Madden from the University of Sydney’s Centre for Disability Research and Policy commented that collaboration with mainstream services is a central issue that must be considered.
“The NDIS will give people funds to purchase services and supports from disability service providers, but most will still require access to mainstream services like health, education and housing,” she explained.
“The design of the NDIS provides the perfect opportunity to rethink the complexities of how these services work together, in fact the sustainability of the scheme and its ability to improve people’s lives depends on it.”
According to Ms Madden, some individuals will require a significant amount of support to navigate the system and services available to them.
YPINH Head Dr Bronwyn Morkham agreed, adding that many young disabled Australians often need services from a number of different government areas, but fail to receive adequate support because agencies do not communicate enough.
“Instead of returning to their lives and their families in the community, too many of our young people end up living in nursing homes or hospitals because services do not collaborate effectively,” Dr Morkham added.
The University of Sydney and YPINH report, titled ‘Cross sector service co-ordination for people with high and complex needs’, highlighted a number of best-practice examples from the industry.
Ms Madden said it is now a case of the health and disability sectors applying the knowledge they already possess to achieve the best results.