NDIS Announcement

NDIS

UMFC has concluded its extensive evaluation of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) to see if the agency could participate in a viable and sustainable way.

The result is very clear, we cannot.  The constraints of providing services under the NDIS framework (i.e. the NDIS Price Guide) do not lend themselves to smaller organisations being able to provide a range of services in a viable and sustainable manner. With less than $1M revenue from services to people with disability, UMFC is considered a smaller provider.

The agency’s existing Aged and Disability Support Services will be restructured over the next 3 months, to adjust to the reduced funding. It will be a difficult time for us during this process. However, we remain committed to continuing to provide quality services to our community and this will be the basis of our restructure. We have been informing our current clients and key stakeholders of the decision, and will continue to share information when it becomes available.

NDIS

The NDIS is set to be fully rolled out in Victoria by the 1/10/17. Most people understand that this radical change in the disability sector is based on moving funding from agencies, to eligible consumers, for them to choose the service and provider that best meets their needs. The premise of the NDIS is widely accepted as the right thing to do. There are however significant impacts of this new direction.

First, agencies need to decide if they can operate under the new model. In the trial sites which have been going for several years, the evidence is that 2 out of 5 agencies have a negative cash position. The NDIS as an insurance scheme funds the provider retrospectively, meaning you need a strong cash flow to operate until the money paid out is recouped.

Second, the trial sites have shown around 30% of consumers have changed providers. This turnover means that providers are relying heavily on casual staff in light of the variable income. This has major ramifications for the workforce and service quality. Clearly experience has shown that the relationship between the worker and consumer is critical. How this will operate with a casual workforce is something to monitor.

Third, the NDIS is very clearly a business model. This means a business-like approach in all aspects (hence the term consumer, not client). So, a cultural change for all involved.

UMFC is examining our position now for post October, seeing what current funding is ongoing and what options under the NDIS may be possible. It is a difficult time for not only our staff, given the uncertainty, but also our current clients as they wait to see what support, if any, they may be entitled to. It can only be hoped that this major change delivers what it promises, better outcomes for consumers.

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UMFC acknowledges the support of the Victorian and the Australian Governments

Commitment to Child Safety

All children and young people who access UMFC Services have a right to feel and be safe and to be treated with respect. We are committed to providing a welcoming and safe environment and working towards the best interests of children and young people at all times.