Typewriter with the word REPORT typed on paper

On 19 October 2021, the Joint Standing Committee on the NDIS tabled its final report on Independent Assessments. 

The full report is available on the committee’s website.

What does it say?

The report makes six recommendations. 

  1. The committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government implement the National Disability Insurance Scheme Reserve Fund as soon as practicably possible.
  2. The committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government amend the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013 to include a specific commitment to and definition of co-design, following extensive consultation on what co-design should be.
  3. The committee recommends that consultations with medical and allied health professionals for the purposes of access to the National Disability Insurance Scheme and to support requests for items in NDIS plans be:
  • carried out by health professionals nominated by participants and/or their nominees, where appropriate and available;
  • holistic, taking into account medical reports and other contextual information as appropriate; and
  • multidisciplinary, involving consultation with multiple experts who treat and have treated the person.
  1. The committee recommends that where consultations with medical and allied health professionals for the purposes of access to the National Disability Insurance Scheme or to support requests for items in NDIS plans cannot be carried out by appropriate professionals nominated by a participant and/or their nominee: 
  • The National Disability Insurance Agency implement an accreditation process for appropriate professionals to carry out consultations for those in the circumstances described above;
  • The National Disability Insurance Agency ensure that these assessments are holistic and multidisciplinary; and
  • The National Disability Insurance Agency implement specific, targeted strategies to ensure that particular cohorts are not disadvantaged by such a process.
  1. The committee recommends that the Australian Government consider funding bulk-billed consultations with medical and allied health professionals for the purposes described in Recommendation 3 and Recommendation 4.
  1. The committee recommends that all assessment tools that the National Disability Insurance Agency proposes, for the purposes of funded assessments to access the National Disability Insurance Scheme and to help inform funding decisions, should be subject to rigorous consultation with people with disabilities, Disability Representative Organisations and relevant health and allied health practitioners before the National Disability Insurance Agency decides to implement them.

What we had to say

IDEAS made a submission to the Joint Standing Committee earlier this year, and you can see what we had to say here.  

Now what?

IDEAS and other organisations in the sector were among those to welcome news from Minister Reynolds that Independent Assessments are being scrapped. We note that, as the Joint Standing Committee has suggested, that special consideration must be made to include people with disabilities in the planning and implementation of the assessment system that is ultimately put in its place.

Download the report

Independent Assessments - Final Report


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