National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)

NDIS – we are the experts, and we’re on your side

The National Insurance Disability Scheme (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 funding, through the creation of an annual plan, to purchase the supports they need to live the life they want and to achieve their goals.  We are here to help you and will be with you all the way on your NDIS journey.

There is a lot to learn quite quickly about the NDIS and we want you to know that SCIA can guide you. We work closely with the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) to make sure our members and clients have the latest news and information on everything NDIS. Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a unique disability that has complexities not shared by other disabilities, so we are educating the NDIA where possible to improve their knowledge and understanding of the impact SCI has on your life.

We can help you:

  • Understand the NDIS and how it works
  • Learn when the NDIS rollout will impact you
  • Prepare you to access the NDIS
  • Identify goals and aspirations you have that the NDIS might fund
  • Navigate the pre-planning, planning and management of your NDIS plan.

To help you prepare for your first NDIS plan we produced an interactive book Preparing for your first NDIS planning meeting (PDF). Everything you need to know is covered, including checklists, useful sources of information and NDIS categories of support that you can consider prior to your planning meeting. We strongly recommend you download this book. Please call our Customer Connect team with any questions you have on 1800 819 775.

Fabian’s Story

Fabian has C6 quadriplegia and he transitioned into the NDIS in December 2016.

How did you find the experience transitioning into the NDIS?
It was an easy process. I rang the 1800 number to find out how to apply to be a participant. I filled out the form with my GP completing the “needs” section. Once I submitted it, I received a response within two weeks to say I was eligible.

How do you feel about the process and what are your thoughts of the NDIS thus far?
I am a pretty patient person so I just let the process roll along and my application was processed without hiccups. The biggest change for me was the fact I hadn’t been the recipient of any care agency
previously, as I lived independently.

Read more

If you would like to share your experience of the NDIS with SCIA’s members and clients please email us at

Your NDIS partner

As well as helping you prepare for your first National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Plan we can continue to help you in a number of ways.

Support coordination

Request funding for Support Coordination at your NDIS planning meeting and this will ensure we are on hand to help you access supports to live life as you choose. We can also help you identify supports, coordinate these supports, resolve points of crisis, provide mentoring and peer support, and resolve any issues that arise during the planning process.

top tip

At your planning meeting make sure you ask about Support Coordination as this will allow you to engage someone like us to be by your side every step of the way.

If you would like the option to use SCIA specialist Support Coordination staff in the first year of your plan then answer YES to questions relating to support and make sure you directly ask your planner to request Support Coordination funding be included in your plan.

Plan management

Under the NDIS participants have financial control over the supports and services included in their plan. This means you can choose who you employ to receive these services from, and also how these services are delivered to you. It also means that these services and supports will need to be invoiced and then paid for.

The options you have to manage the payment of the supports and services in your plan are:

  1. Manage your funding yourself (or nominate a friend, carer or family member)
  2. Use an NDIS registered plan management provider (such as SCIA)
  3. Have the NDIA manage your funding*
  4. Use a combination of these options.
top tip

*If you choose to have NDIA manage your funding, you can only purchase services from NDIS registered providers. This means that, unlike self-managing or using a registered plan management provider, you would not be able to use an unregistered service such as a local gardener or cleaner.

If you want a specialist organisation such as SCIA to provide plan management and support coordination you will have to clearly identify this to your NDIS planner – it is much simpler for you if you combine these two supports if you want them both.

Not happy with your plan and support?

After your NDIS planning meeting you will receive your first NDIS Plan. If you do not receive what you expected in your NDIS Plan, you can ask for an internal review by the NDIA.

You can download an application for a review of decision form from the NDIS website. You don’t have to use this form but it may help you to describe why you want a review of the decision.

If you are still not happy after the NDIA internal review of the decision, you can apply for an external review by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT), a tribunal that exists outside the NDIA. You cannot ask the AAT to review a decision by the NDIA until the decision has been internally reviewed by the NDIA.

SCIA is also able to help you with the review process. We are funded by the Commonwealth Government to assist applicants in navigating the process of AAT review of NDIA decisions.

For information about applying for a review by the AAT, see the AAT website or call the AAT on 1800 228 333.

Contact SCIA on 1800 819 775 or email if you would like our help with an AAT review.

For further information on this or any other topic please call SCIA by phone on 1800 819 775 or email

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