NDIS FAQs and Glossary

What is the NDIS? The NDIS is the new way Australia is providing support for people with permanent and significant disabilities. It will give people with a disability direct access to money, through the creation of an annual plan, to fund the supports they need to live life and achieve their goals.

How SCIA can help you? There will be three types of support for SCIA members, clients and customers in relation to the NDIS; general information about the NDIS, specific assistance with NDIS planning, and services directly offered by SCIA under the NDIS.

What are the key principles of the NDIS? The NDIS will fund reasonable and necessary supports that help NDIS participants reach their goals, objectives and aspirations. Supports are funded in a range of areas, e.g. education, employment, socialising, independence, living arrangements and health and wellbeing. 

What is the NDIA? The NDIA is the National Disability Insurance Agency, an independent federal government agency. Their job is to implement the NDIS across Australia.

Who can access NDIS? You must meet the following criteria:

  • have a permanent disability that significantly affects your ability to take part in everyday activities,
  • be aged less than 65 when you first access the scheme,
  • be an Australian citizen, live in Australia and hold a permanent visa or hold a Protected Special Category visa.

What are the NDIS’s disability requirements?Your disability must meet the following criteria:

  • you have an impairment or condition that is likely to be permanent and
  • your impairment substantially reduces your ability to participate effectively in activities, or perform tasks or actions and
  • your impairment affects your capacity for social and economic participation and
  • you are likely to require support under the NDIS for your lifetime. 

SCIA believes that most people with a spinal cord injury will meet this criteria. 

What can be funded? The types of supports that the NDIS may fund includes; daily personal activities (including personal care), social and community participation, transport, workplace help, therapeutic supports (e.g. physiotherapists, psychologists, registered nurses etc), help with household tasks, health and wellbeing activities (e.g. exercise programs like SCIA’s NeuroMoves), aids or equipment assessment, set up and training, home modification, mobility equipment and vehicle modifications.

What will not be funded? A support will not be funded if it; is not related to the participant’s disability, duplicates other supports already funded by a different mechanism from the NDIS (e.g. Medicare), relates to day-to-day living costs that are not related to disability support needs, or is likely to cause harm to the participant or pose a risk to others.

What happens to my aids and equipment needs under the NDIS? Basically all your aids and equipment requirements will be covered by the NDIS – equipment like wheelchairs, beds, hoists etc. and consumables such as continence equipment.

How are the funds someone needs for their plan managed? You choose how your funds are managed, how you receive your supports and which service providers you use. You can choose from the following:   

    1. Agency managed – support providers claim directly from the NDIA.
    2. Plan manager – another organisation manages your plans financial and support transactions (SCIA is an organisation providing this service).
    3. Self-managed – you manage the funds and are responsible for all transactions, e.g. you employ support staff directly and pay them yourself, or pay an organisation to take care of the financial side of things.
    4. Combination – you can use a combination of the above together. 

For further information see Managing Your Supports and NDIS funding.

What is a registered plan management provider? An individual or organisation that manages the funds and the delivery of supports in an NDIS participant’s plan. SCIA is a registered plan management provider.

What do I need to do to prepare for the NDIS? You need to answer three questions:

  1. Do you qualify for the NDIS? When will it start in the region where you live?
  2. Do you currently receive funding from your state government to support you?
  3. If you do the NDIS who will contact you. If you don’t you will need to contact the NDIS on 1800 800 110 and request a meeting.

How does the NDIS process work? Once you’ve been in contact with the NDIS, you will start the planning process. The My NDIS Pathway guide has been provided to help you understand the path you will travel as the NDIS begins to work with you. It should be read before your initial planning appointment. The guide includes a checklist to help you to identify your needs, goals and current supports. This information is then taken into account in your planning meeting with the NDIS. The NDIS advises that you are able to have a support person with you during appointments, such as a family member, friend, carer or support worker.

Once your plan has been agreed and you’ve chosen how your plan and funds will be managed, you will start to receive your supports under the NDIS. Each year your plan will be reviewed to make sure you are receiving what you need.

Will SCIA provide services under NDIS? Yes, SCIA is a registered provider under NDIS for a range of services such as advice, information and assistance, exercise services and employment services. SCIA is also a registered plan management provider.

Am I eligible for the NDIS if I have previously received a compensation payment? You may still be eligible for some funding. If you have received, or will receive, compensation money that is intended to pay for supports it may reduce the funding the NDIS can give you. 

What if I am over 65 or not eligible for the NDIS? People who are aged over 65 years cannot access the NDIS. If you are 65+ and are currently accessing a disability service, you will continue to receive government support consistent with what you currently receive – this is called continuity of support. The NSW government provides a fact sheet that explains what the NDIS means for people aged 65 and over.

Does the NDIS cover my health care needs? This is a complex area. Both the NDIS and the health care system will be responsible for providing services that support a person’s health. The NDIS will fund supports that help with daily living associated with your disability. The health system is responsible for assisting with medical and clinical treatment. 

I am currently receiving services from SCIA. What does the NDIS mean for me? SCIA can continue to provide services to you under the NDIS, if you choose.

I am currently receiving services from another provider. Can I receive services from SCIA? Yes, under the NDIS you can choose who you want to receive services from.

Download a copy of the FAQs 

Click here to download a copy of the FAQs in more detail - includes specific links to the NDIS website.



This is a glossary of words and terms you’ll hear as you enter the NDIS. Please note this list has been put together by SCIA not the NDIS.  

Continuity of support: the government’s commitment that anyone not eligible for or signed up the NDIS will continue to receive supports consistent with what they receive now.

Funds / funding: the money that the NDIS will allocate to you to spend on the supports laid out in your plan

LAC: Local Area Coordinator

NDIA: National Disability Insurance Agency

NDIS: National Disability Insurance Scheme

Participant: The person with a disability being funded by the NDIS

Plan: the list of things you need and want to do, achieve and buy, and the money you will need to fund them

Reasonable and necessary supports: supports related to a person’s disability that the NDIA deem to be required to live and achieve the goals set out in a plan

SCIA: Spinal Cord Injures Australia

Supports: the services, products and equipment you need that are laid out in your plan

Registered plan management provider: an organisation or individual registered with the NDIS to manage the money and the delivery of supports in an NDIS participant’s plan

The NSW government also provides a glossary for the words they use when talking about the NDIS



Contact SCIA on 1800 819 775 or 
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