It’s a safe guess that most individuals don’t particularly appreciate receiving critical comments, regardless of their area of work. However, complaints hold great importance. They are necessary for solving issues and making changes.
New regulations that apply to all people and organisations registered as providers in accordance with Section 73E of the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013 (Cth) (“the Act”) went into force in 2018. These regulations specifically require that any such individuals, companies, and/or organisations develop and employ robust processes to handle complaints about the support and services they offer.
Below are some of the rules that are crucial for NDIS providers to follow.
NDIS Complaints Management and Resolution
Rule 8 outlines the minimal requirements for “complaints management and resolution systems” by registered providers. It demands the following of any such systems:
- Permit anyone with concerns to contact the registered NDIS provider if they have issues with the services or other assistance offered (anonymously or otherwise).
- Include a straightforward method that is easy to use for providing and receiving negative feedback.
- Make sure to offer assistance to anyone who has shared or wishes to share unfavourable comments.
Not only that. These systems must be created in accordance with Rule 8 to guarantee that:
- The provider acknowledges any formally filed complaint and swiftly, equitably, and effectively deals with it.
- The provider responds to the complaint’s concern appropriately.
- There are procedures in place to make sure that anyone who files a complaint, as well as any other participants who are impacted by the complaint’s subject, is aware of how to bring it to the attention of the Commissioner of the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission (referred to as “the Commission”).
Rules 9 - 12
These regulations cover various topics, including fairness, documentation, training, and complaints reporting. Here’s a quick overview of each.
Requires that a complaints management and resolution mechanism developed and put into place by a certified NDIS provider maintains procedural fairness when handling criticism, unfavourable comments, and issues of concern brought forward by impacted people.
Requires documentation of all complaints, the actions are taken to address them, and the resolution process. Additionally, it states that the provider must keep all such records for a period of seven years following the day they were made.
Requires that the complaints management and resolution system clearly define the duties and responsibilities of all staff members involved in the receipt, evaluation, and resolution of complaints made to a registered NDIS provider.
Requires that, in accordance with any obligations under Commonwealth, State, or Territory laws, the complaints management, and resolution system contain mechanisms for case referral to any other body.
Compliance and enforcement
The Commission is in charge of overseeing registered NDIS providers. Additionally, it is in charge of making sure they abide by the registration requirements.
Any issues involving both registered and unregistered providers and their employees are subject to investigation by the Commission. As a result, the Commission can take further action depending on how serious the findings are. It has the authority to impose particular penalties, including but not limited to labour bans and registration loss. For those that do not comply, it may also pursue fines.
Any registered NDIS provider that disobeys the new regulations violates section 73F of the Act’s registration requirements. Such a violation now carries a penalty of 250 penalty units under Section 73J of the Act.
Looking for Help with NDIS Compliance in Melbourne?
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