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Frontline: NDIS and Aged Care news you need to know (1 Feb 2023)

NDIS News

WA’s big summit

The NDIS Transformation Summit on April 4 is an opportunity for leaders and experts in the West Australian disability sector to come together and share their knowledge and experiences.

The focus of the summit is on transformational case studies, exploring innovative approaches to supporting and enhancing the collaborative disability ecosystem, and improving outcomes for NDIS participants.

Attendees will have the chance to connect, collaborate, and learn from one another as they work towards a common goal of improving the lives of individuals with disabilities.

4th April 2023 8 am – 4 pm.

Location: Fraser’s King’s Park

Melbourne Multicultural Disability Inclusion Expo

The Melbourne Multicultural Disability Inclusion Expo on February 23 will bring together people with disabilities, service and product providers.

Come and meet NDIS industry experts, participants, auditors, and new disability technology providers.
Location Manningham Hotel
Time 9am -4pm
Contact www.royalmanagementconsultants.com

Inclusive Housing Australia sees ‘unequivocal need’ for group homes

The Daily Telegraph reports that plans for a group home in western Sydney for young adults with disability has been lodged by Inclusive Housing Australia.

The NDIS registered provider says the local council “cannot argue” with the area’s need for the homes which, according to the plans, will be single story, semi-detached dwellings featuring up to three bedrooms and housing a maximum of 10 residents.

“The group housing delivers an essential public good designed to be liveable, accessible and functional and improve the lives of those with disability,” planning documents state. “This type of accommodation is generally missing from typical specialised housing and these young people seeking an independent life are often overlooked.”

Disability sector losing recruits to screening check delays

According to a story in The Age, Victoria’s disability support sector is losing one new worker each week because screening checks can take up to three months to clear.

Most Australian states allow recruits to work while supervised until their screening process is complete, but Victorian employees cannot begin their jobs while their application is processed.

Sarah Fordyce, Victorian manager at National Disability Services, said: “We and our members want to be assured and confident that workers have appropriate screening. But there are labour shortages everywhere and people are being offered a job, and then they have to wait and often walk away and find more immediate work.”

Fordyce also highlighted the issue of quality and safety implications for those currently employed in the sector if there are too few workers on a shift.

Aged Care News

Home Care reform to be in force by July 2024

The Australian Government has committed to delivering a reformed and improved in-home aged care program by 1 July 2024. This follows the timeframe recommended by the Royal Commission in

Aged Care Quality and Safety (Royal Commission).

The new in-home aged care program will address the Royal Commission’s recommendations to support older people to stay in their homes for longer.

It will replace existing Commonwealth funded in-home aged care programs:
  • Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP),
  • Home Care Packages (HCP) Program,
  • Short-Term Restorative Care (STRC) Programme, and
  • Residential Respite Referrals.

The government is working to finalise the design of the program, with the goal to address issues such as:

  • waiting times,
  • better alignment of services to needs,
  • access to high quality and safe aged care,
  • excessive administration costs, and
  • insufficient access to the supports that older people need to stay independent at home

Free business advice for eligible providers

Eligible providers can apply to receive free, independent, and confidential advice to support aged care reforms and improve financial and business operations through the Business Advisory Service.

Support is available to providers operating in regional, rural and remote locations and smaller providers.

Approved providers are encouraged to apply if they are experiencing financial stress and have concerns about their ability to maximise business performance and service viability.

Find more information about the Business Advisory Service, including how to apply, on the department’s website.

Home Care Packages Program:

Update to Provider Portal to implement new price caps

Changes to Home Care Package (HCP) administration and management charges came into effect on 1 January 2023.

Providers impacted by the new legislative requirements must update their prices on their My Aged Care provider profile.

From 27 February 2023, providers will not be able to enter prices above the legislated caps in the Provider Portal. These system caps will only affect updated prices. Exit amount and separate third party charge fields will also be removed.

The department and the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission will be monitoring published prices to ensure compliance.

If you require assistance updating your profile, information is available on the My Aged Care website. You can also contact the Service Provider Helpline on 1800 836 799.

Home Care Packages Program: changes in pricing

Caps to administration and management charges in the Home Care Packages (HCP) Program commenced on 1 January 2023. To assist providers, the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission has published a Regulatory Bulletin: Changes to Administration and Management Charges in the Home Care Packages Program.

The Bulletin provides further details on the changes and how the Commission will be monitoring and ensuring compliance. Providers are encouraged to read the Bulletin and review their current pricing arrangements to ensure they comply with these changes.

Read the Bulletin on the Commission’s website.

Reminder: Care minutes reporting due 14 February

The second Quarterly Financial Report (QFR) for 2022–23 is due in two weeks and must be submitted through Forms Administration by 14 February. You must also respond to, or action, any request to amend your submitted data by 7 March.

Care minutes data submitted after the initial due date will not be included in the calculation of Star Ratings. This will result in a 1 Star Rating for the Staffing sub-category.


For care minutes reporting support, email qfr@stewartbrown.com.au

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