National Disability Insurance Scheme

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is the new way of providing individualised support for people with disability, their families and carers.  The NDIS is the insurance that gives us all peace of mind. Disability could affect anyone and having the right to support makes a big difference.

The NDIS provides eligible people a flexible, whole-of-life approach to the support needed to pursue their goals and aspirations and participate in daily life.  Under the NDIS, individuals will have more control, greater flexibility and the power to choose providers, instead of funding being allocated to specific organisations.

The NDIS will be rolled out on the Gold Coast from 1 July 2018.  The NDIS will be administered by the National Disability Insurance Agency.

Over the coming months, as we observe and learn from implementation in other regions GCRS will be sharing more information through meetings, newsletters, workshops, our website and social media.

Are you receiving our NDIS email updates?  If not, please get in touch to ensure we have the correct email address.

Where do I start?

The first step in preparation is to have a basic understanding of how the NDIS differs to the current State based funding system.  If you have not attended any NDIS workshops or information sessions, we suggest this as your starting point.  You can find out details of NDIS information sessions on the NDIS Events page and also through the  Community Resource Unit.  The NDIS website is also a great resource for general information.

What we do know is that positive experiences with NDIS transition are occurring where families have spent some time preparing and goal setting.  It’s also beneficial to have an advocate, friend, family member or service provider participate in your initial planning conversation with the NDIS.  This helps to ensure all of your requests and needs are adequately stated.


To be eligible for NDIS funding, you need to be:

  • Under 65 years of age;
  • An Australian Citizen, a permanent resident, or New Zealand citizen who is a Protected Special Category Visa Holder;
  • Live in a launch site;
  • Meet either the disability or early intervention requirements.

Accessing the Scheme

You can request access to the Scheme by phoning 1800 800 110.  As part of the access request process, you will be asked:

  • to confirm your identity and/or a person’s authority to act on your behalf
  • questions to see if you meet the NDIS access requirements (age, residence and disability)
  • questions about providing consent to enter the Scheme and about seeking information from third parties

If you are already receiving disability support services, you could be contacted by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) anytime from January 1 2018.

If you are not currently receiving any disability supports, but wish to join the scheme, you will need to contact the NDIA (1800 800 110) and ask for an Access Request Form.  If help is needed to complete this paperwork, GCRS can assist you with this.

Getting NDIS Ready

If you are eligible for NDIS, you will talk to a planner either over the phone or in person for an assessment or planning conversation to discuss your son or daughters needs and goals.  This assessment can take 2- 3 hours and in order to be prepared it will be important to consider how your son’s or daughter’s disability impacts on day to day life.

The NDIS will fund ‘reasonable’ and ‘necessary’ supports, which means support will need to:

  • Be directly related to the person’s disability;
  • Not included day-to-day living costs that are not related to a participants disability support needs (such as rent or groceries);
  • Represent value for money;
  • Be likely to be effective and beneficial to the participant; and
  • Take into account informal supports.


What are our OPPORTUNITIES?  The NDIS provides an opportunity to get creative and think big.  What could make a difference in your life?    It’s useful to consider ‘what if’, and to keep a notebook handy to record ideas as they come to you.  This will help you to identify possible areas for future goal setting.

What are our CHALLENGES?  It’s also a good idea to write out a ‘day in the life’, from the time you wake up to the time you go to bed; what are all the things you are doing to help and support your family member, what impact does this have on the family unit/household/relationships etc.  What are the challenges?  What is stopping you from achieving your goals?

What are your NEEDS?  Another great exercise in planning is to look at your weekly schedule and take note of all activities and supports you receive throughout the week.  This is not only an opportunity to review your current supports and services, it allows you to very easily identify any gaps.

Planning Resources

My NDIS Pathway

GCRS Future Planning

GCRS Goal Setting

NDIS GP Factsheet

What types of support could be funded?

Your NDIS plan will be individualised to meet your needs and goals, and every persons plan will include a variety of different types of support, including:

  • Transport
  • Social and community participation
  • Support workers
  • Therapy
  • Health and wellbeing activities
  • Education and training
  • Aids and equipment
  • Home and vehicle modifications

Supports that can also directly or indirectly benefit family and/or carers may be funded, such as:

  • personal care to support an individual in their home or the community;
  • supports to assist people to enjoy social and community interaction without relying solely on you;
  • assistance with tasks of daily living, including help to improve a person’s ability to do things;
  • training related to the caring role that may enhance your ability to provide care;
  • short term accommodation away from family, home or a holiday.

As an informal part of the planning process, the NDIA may talk to family and carers about your role as a carer – what role do you currently play and what you are willing/capable of doing in the future?  Families and carers may like to write a Carer Statement to provide to the NDIA during your planning conversation.   This may assist the NDIA to understand the family and carer relationships.  An example of a Carer statement can be found here.