Blog Posts

NDIS Coordination of Supports – What shouldn’t be happening

When a person receives support coordination funding in their NDIS plan, it is a sum of money to last the length of the plan. Sometimes more is needed, other times it is not all consumed. Sometimes, a crisis may arise,  and a huge amount will be used in a short period of time.

Here’s an example of a coordination of supports budget.

$7000 for the year. The hourly rate is $98.06, as stated in the NDIS price guide.

This means there is approx 72 hours for the year.  We could even break that down further to say, approximately 1.4 hours per week.  Sometimes, breaking the budget down can help manage expectations for everyone, and helps the CoS keep on track.

However,  THIS DOESN’T mean, that 1.4 hours will get used every week.

Support Coordination is a dynamic support. Some weeks 5 hours gets consumed, and some weeks 15 minutes gets consumed, or maybe even nothing at all!

We are hearing many stories from participants and workers alike, that some organisations are claiming coordination money automatically each week, even if the support is not provided. This is NOT OK!

Some organisations have even set up their billing system to do this!

We also know that some organisation’s support coordinators are put on KPI’s, and have to make a certain amount of billable hours a day.

These same support coordinators are expected to refer internally, and are often ‘questioned’ when they don’t.

Some organisations have been charging the coordination from the minute the coordinator leaves the office. Ummm that’s really NOT OK! Only since July 2019 have the NDIA agreed to allow support coordinators to charge any travel time.

So our take away message to everyone is this.

Your support coordinator works for you, and with you. They are there to meet YOUR needs, NOT the needs of their organisation.  Shop around, make some calls, ask questions, and change organisations if you are not happy.

Get in touch with us here to learn about how we do things.

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Keeping it Private – Our Tips for Sharing your NDIS Plan with Providers

A person’s NDIS plan contains some very private and personal information.

It is very common for providers to ask for a copy of your NDIS plan for their records.

Do you know that you do not have to share your NDIS plan with any of your providers, apart from your Coordinator of Supports (CoS)?

You will need to share your plan with your CoS so that they can help you set up supports and budget accordingly. They need to know what’s in your plan to do this.

However, we recommend that you ONLY share the information with providers that they need to know, and that will be helpful for them to support you.

Helpful information can include:

  • Your goals
  • Your support network

Information they need:

  • The funding category/line item where they can claim from
  • The amount of funding that you have allocated to them.

If your funding is managed by the NDIA, they will also need:

  • You date of birth,
  • Your NDIS number beginning with 43,
  • Your last name,
  • Plan End Date – if they are providing services for the life of your plan.

All of this information should be stipulated in a service agreement.

As a service that provides coordination, we only send off a copy of someone’s plan at the person’s consent.

With that in mind, please think about it before you send off yours, or someone else’s, NDIS plan.

Reach out to us here for more information about what we do.

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Believe in Yourself

I have been spending the last few months ensuring our policies and procedures are up to standard, and I am happy to announce that I passed Stage 1 of our NDIS Certification Audit with flying colours!

The auditor made the comment that my policies were some of the best he’d seen, and wondered if I had purchased them! I have spent the last five years writing policies and procedures for several different organisations, and had some help from some lovely people along the way. I have successfully supported three NDIS organisations to achieve Third Party Verification in NSW, and on my way to achieving verification under the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission.

When you believe in what you do, it is reflected in your work.

Very happy to announce that we are providing:
⭐️ Independent Coordination of Supports
⭐️ Specialist Support Coordination
⭐️ Specialist Behaviour Support
⭐️ Counselling
⭐️ Sexual Health, Relationship and Parenting Support – I can focus on any area of relationships, sexual health, personal development, pregnancy, breastfeeding and more!

Check out our flyer below for more information or get in touch!
Brigette – Founder

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Mark Pietsch – Support Coordinator

Mark has a passion for equity. He has been involved in the Community Services sector for over 10 years; with a great deal of that time spent helping young people and people with a disability to find their voice. Throughout his career Mark has worked in schools and the community as a youth worker and has worked in Government, with Members of Parliament, and local support services on many occasions to resolve community issues.

Mark has a thorough knowledge of programs and support services available to help people to make the most of their potential, regardless of their circumstances. As a recipient of the University of Wollongong’s Movement Disorder Foundation Scholarship he regularly speaks up for others regarding issues affecting students with disabilities.

Mark takes time to listen, he loves to hear stories of individuality and relishes opportunities to give encouragement. He has completed a Diploma of Community Services, volunteers his time as a Justice of the Peace, is currently studying a double degree in Psychology and Social Sciences, and a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment.

Get in touch with Mark– markp@createasenseofplace.com.au

Ph: 0428 269 061

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Homelessness Resources

Unfortunately the rate of people who are homeless, or at risk of becoming homeless, is a real crisis around Australia.

In the Hunter, there are some great organisations that can provide support.

Please reach out if you, or anyone you know, might need some support by calling any of the following local numbers xo

Link2home – 1800 152 152
Provides information, assessment and referral to specialist homelessness services, temporary accomodation and other appropriate services for people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

Mental Health Line – 1800 011 511

NSW Domestic Violence Line – 1800 656 463

Lifeline Helpline – 13 11 14

Salvation Army 24hr Care Line – 1300 363 622

Alcohol & Drug Support Service – 4921 1211

Police Assistance Line – 131 444

Matthew Talbot Homeless Service (Men’s) – 4961 1411

Samaritans Specialist Homelessness Service – 4922 1502

Soul Cafe – 4926 1758
Free meals and other services.

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Our Top Tips for Plan Reviews

  • Make sure that YOU choose a date, time and place that suits YOU. Do not be pressured into thinking that you have to have it right then on the phone, or in a day’s time.
  • This is YOUR meeting, take control. If you are feeling overwhelmed, bring someone with you. If you don’t have anyone that could support you, get in touch with your relevant Disability Advocacy organisation from your state/territory. You can check out a few from which we have listed on our website here.
  • Prepare in advance, write things down or have someone you trust write these for you.
  • We have a lot of useful resources on our website that can help you prepare, you can check them out here.
  • Think about your goals, and how your funding helps you achieve your goals.
  • If you have therapists involved, or any other specialists, support etc that you would like to write a report for you for the meeting, let them know ahead of time with as much notice as possible. If you have a support coordinator, they can help gather all the necessary information needed to support your review.
  • Work out how much your regular supports cost each week. Use this figure to help you plan what funding you will need for the year. You can check out the price guide for your state here. Have a support coordinator? Get them to help you navigate this price guide, it reads like stereo instructions! 😛
  • If your plan is near the end and you still don’t have a review set, or are waiting on supporting documentation, request a three month extension and the NDIA can pro rata the funding. But don’t forget to ask them to include your AT and consumables budget!
  • If you have a coordinator of supports, this is what they do. Use them, and if they won’t help you, get a new coordinator.
  • If your meeting is becoming overwhelming for you, take a break.
  • Just breathe ❤
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The Benefits of Using an Independent Support Coordinator

Defining Independent Coordination of Supports

Independent Coordination of Supports means that your support coordinator, is from a separate organisation to your other supports. Just like you might have a therapist who is separate from your community access supports.

Here are some valuable benefits to having an Independent Support Coordinator:

  • Your coordinator will research and make referrals with you that are based on your needs, not on trying to bring more money into their organisation.
  • You will have more choice and control over your supports, without feeling pressure to use a one stop shop.
  • You will be able to work with organisations that are masters of their trade.
  • You can make a complaint without worrying that your support coordinator is best buddies with the program manager who oversees your community supports.
  • Your coordinator is actively working to find the best value for your plan budget.
  • The NDIA prefers participants to use independent support coordinators.

Get in touch if you would like to know more about us, and why using an independent support coordinator could be right for you.

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We Have Capacity!

We know how challenging it can be to navigate the NDIS, and understand an NDIS plan.

We can help you!

Our Support Coordinators are experienced, knowledgeable and friendly.

Get in touch with us today and learn about why we are different, and how we can help you to get the best out of your NDIS plan.

Contact Us

Learn more about out team

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Support Coordination Fact Sheet

Download the Support Coordination Fact Sheet here

We see a lot of confusion out there, especially within the health sector, and amongst allied health professionals and service providers, about the role of a support coordinator.

So we put together a summary that we believe provides a good overview. We will be presenting this information at an upcoming provider forum.

If you are looking  for an experienced support coordinator to help you put the pieces of your NDIS plan together, get in touch with us, and discover why we are different.

 

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A Day in the Life of a Support Coordinator – Carrie Gibbs

Today I visited a new participant who had a stroke about 5 years ago. This affected the left side of his brain. He is unable to speak and barely communicate, other than to nod his head yes and no and through body language. The stroke also affected the right side of his body, which he is unable to move. Both legs have also been amputated from the knee and he is in a wheelchair.

Something he really wanted to do was learn how to communicate again. As the Support Coordinator, I spoke with a local speech therapist who specialise with stroke patients. I asked if there would be any assistive technology to assist him with his communication. We had the first appointment and she went over some assistive technology that he could use. One was a iPad with a app that speaks for him, by pushing certain buttons that the speech therapist can create according to his needs.

Just at the thought of being able to communicate again, made him smile from ear to ear. It is moments like these I really enjoy my job and making a difference in someone’s life.

Carrie

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