WORDS GISELLE BEAUMONT
Q.) NDIS assisted technology and home modifications. What does this mean and what should I expect?
A.) Navigating the NDIS system can be difficult. People often think that as a carer or person with a disability, they should be able to easily access home modifications or assisted technology. Unfortunately this is not always the case; especially if there is lack of evidence to support the claim in the initial plan.
If you think that assisted technology (AT) needs to be a part of your NDIS plan to access equipment or modifications to your home, you will need this included in your first plan. In order for this to be included, you will need to have supporting evidence that highlights why this at is necessary. without this evidence, at is unlikely to be included.
The NDIS plan normally has a section in the plan under ‘Improve Daily Living’. This is where your supporting evidence to access at can be included. You can arrange for an allied health professional, for example, an occupational therapist, to complete a function or home modification assessment to submit to the NDIS.
If you find that AT is not written into the plan and you believe that you, or the person you are caring for needs equipment or home modifications, then you can request an unscheduled plan review. to do this, you will need to put in a ‘Change of Circumstance’ form with your new evidence attached. Your support coordinator can assist with this process. If you do not have support coordination there is plenty of information on the NDIS website to help you.
If you are being declined by the NDIS and they are advising you that your request is not reasonable and necessary, perhaps this could be that the evidence you have provided is not enough, or the report does not highlight or reflect what is really occurring. unfortunately, even with supporting evidence, in some cases the NDIS will determine that at this stage, the person simply does not require the level of equipment or modifications that is being requested.
My advice would be to ask the Huntington’s allied health professionals from Westmead HD clinic to look at your existing reports to ensure that they cover all areas of needs, physical function, difficulties and current risks. Having support coordination to help you navigate this and do some of the leg work for you and with you, can make this process a lot less stressful.
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