24 February 2020
For immediate release
QAI is seriously concerned about the proposed introduction of mandatory Independent Assessments into the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
Under proposed changes, people with disability will be forced to undergo a generic, one-off assessment with a stranger. The outcome of this assessment will then determine whether the person meets access or how much funding they will receive in their plan.
Rather than remove inequities and inconsistencies in the scheme, QAI considers that mandatory Independent Assessments will create further inequality. The proposed changes:
- Fail to capture the diverse support needs of people with disability;
- Remove choice and control from people with disability by forcing them to have assessments by a provider they have not chosen and who may not have specialist skills or knowledge of their disability;
- Deny people with disability the right to appeal the outcome of the Independent Assessment, removing essential checks and balances;
- Withhold the completed assessment report from the person with disability, instead only providing a summary;
- Remove the opportunity for people with disability to provide evidence of individualised reasonable and necessary supports, meaning that their funding will no longer be tailored to their individual disability support needs.
QAI considers that Independent Assessments undermine the human rights of people with disability and will fundamentally change the nature of the NDIS, further distancing it from the scheme originally envisaged in the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013 (Cth).
QAI has provided written submissions to both the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) and the Joint Standing Committee on the NDIS. QAI has also written to the Hon Stuart Robert MP (Federal Minister for the NDIS), Hon Craig Crawford MP (Queensland Minister for Disability Services) and NDIA CEO Martin Hoffman outlining our concerns in more detail. To read our submissions, click the links below.
Read our Independent Assessments submission.
Media contact: Emma Phillips (07) 3844 4200