Disability Care and Support

All jurisdictions recently reaffirmed their strong commitment to implementing the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) across Australia.  Important lessons are being learnt from the NDIS trial sites in the Hunter in NSW, the Barwon area in Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania, and they will inform  
full-scheme design.

Reform of Disability Services

In August 2011, the Productivity Commission released a major report on Disability Care and Support. The report found that the current disability support system is underfunded, unfair, fragmented, and inefficient, and gives people with a disability little choice and no certainty of access to appropriate supports. It recommended that there should be a new National Disability Insurance Scheme that provides insurance cover for all Australians in the event of significant disability, including to fund long-term high quality care and support for people with significant disabilities. In response, COAG agreed on the need for major reform of disability services through a National Disability Insurance Scheme.

The Productivity Commission also made recommendations in relation to a National Injury Insurance Scheme (NIIS). As part of governments’ commitment to the NIIS, minimum benchmarks have been developed for the provision of lifetime care and support to individuals who are catastrophically injured in motor vehicle accidents, regardless of whether or not an individual is at fault for the accident. Further consideration by governments will also be given to benchmarks for workplace accident and medical treatment injury.